Environmental performance of recycled rubber as drainage layer in extensive green roofs. A comparative Life Cycle Assessment
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Using recycled rubber crumbs as drainage layer in extensive green roofs have high potential to reduce the heating and cooling loads in buildings over traditional materials used as drainage layer, such as pozzolana gravel. However, the environmental impact due to the life cycle should be analyzed to assess its environmental benefit. This paper evaluates the environmental performance of green roofs in which the drainage layer is made of rubber crumbs, a recycled material the use of which is still experimental for this purpose. In this paper Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is applied to compare the environmental impact of four constructive systems, two extensive green roofs without insulation layer and with different drainage materials, e a recycled material, rubber crumbs, and a conventional one, pozzolana gravel -, in front of two conventional flat roofs, with and without thermal insulation (polyurethane), built in an experimental set-up consisting of four monitored house-like cubicles, located in Mediterranean continental climate (Lleida, Spain). The LCA considered the production, construction, operational, and disposal phases of the roofs, according to UNE-EN 15643-2. The operational phase was carried out using data measured in the experimental set-up, considering heating and cooling energy consumptions in the winter and summer period, respectively.