Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011 Episode 11: GreenRoofs in Australasia by Matthew Dillon

February 22, 2012 at 9:33 am

Today we have the pleasure to air Matthew Dillon’s “GreenRoofs in Australasia” from our inaugural  2011 Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit on and our GreenroofsTV channel on YouTube.

Matthew is a hoot of a straight-shootin’ Aussie – a great guy with a dry sense of humor and passion for promoting greenroofs within Australia and New Zealand with  GreenRoofs Australasia (formerly Green Roofs Australia).    Supported by the City of Sydney, last November they presented the 5th National Greening Cities Conference, in Sydney, Australia.

“Green Roofs Australia is a not-for-profit membership organization with an elected committee that draws together the various governmental, organizational and business groups and individuals interested in being kept informed about green roof science, technology, practice, regulations and specifications.” ~  GreenRoofs Australasia

Although we had corresponded,  Aramis and I  finally  met him in Mexico City in October, 2010, when we both spoke at the WGIN Mexico City World Green Roof Congress – El Congreso Mundial de Azoteas Verdes México 2010  (see Reflections of Fall 2010 Greenroof Conferences: Mexico City, Part 1).

Not only did Mathew present at our inaugural Virtual Summit,  GreenRoofs Australasia supported our efforts and was represented in our Associates Pavilion at the  Expo.

We had the extreme pleasure of seeing him again and meeting  his beautiful girlfriend last December in Philadelphia as well.   Here are Aramis and Matt at the Closing Party from CitiesAlive in Philly:

Matthew Dillon hails from Newtown, Australia and since 1980 has expanded his architectural discipline to also encompass interior architecture, sustainable building design, landscape design, public sculpture and green infrastructure for the built form.  He is the current vice president of GreenRoofs Australasia and a member of World Green Infrastructure Network (WGIN), being primarily focused on advocacy to promote the industry.

In his “GreenRoofs in Australasia” video (where he is joined briefly by his four-legged best friend), Matthew says, “As the impacts of climate change have now become a significant political issue and a major public concern in Australia there is a growing support for green infrastructure technology for the built form in urban planning.

“This is a chronological record of the industry in Australia from 1986 – 2011 and the role which GreenRoofs Australasia has played, as the peak body promoting the industry.”

Enjoy!  Visit to see “GreenRoofs in Australasia” or click below:

VS2011 Greenroofs Australasia by Matthew Dillon

Watch earlier videos on our exclusive Virtual Summit play list, or see the following Virtual Summit videos now available on our GreenroofsTV channel on YouTube:

If you’re looking for an overview, make sure to see our  2011 Virtual Summit Highlights video (6:18) and our  2011 Virtual Summit Trailer (2:59).

Check back next week on GreenroofsTV for our 12th installment from the Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit 2011!

~ Linda V.

Vote for Colombian Greenroofs in “Innovadores de America” – Innovators of America by November 7!

October 27, 2011 at 12:25 am

Last November Aramis and I met Colombian architect Andres Ibañez of Biotectonica S.A.S. and PhD candidate at the University of Hong Kong – among other things –  at the  WGIN Mexico City World Green Roof Congress (El Congreso Mundial de Azoteas Verdes México 2010) – where he also presented.  What an interesting guy!  He has a large body of research and completed works in both Hong Kong, his present city of residence, and  Bogotá, his hometown.

Next month we will be highlighting both in our Guest Feature Article entitled “Pioneering Vegetated Architecture in  Colombia: From Research to Regulations,” which is very impressive, indeed.


“The practice of vegetated architecture in Colombia is in the process of being consolidated as a feasible technological choice. This paper explains the local process of green roofs dissemination initiated with a research project at National University of Colombia and accounts for the state-of the-art both in public and private sectors. Six topics are addressed:

1) The stage of transferring  scientific knowledge from a research-based approach to the practice;
2) determination of key urban problems and technical parameters for experimentation regarding substrate, draining systems, vegetation and whole systems is explained;
3) mechanisms of university-market government engagement to overcome cultural and disciplinary barriers;
4) criteria for future Bogotá green roof guidelines under development;
5) appropriate technological strategies for  green roofs in response to local conditions.

Issues of creativity, integration and quality are  addressed in order to encourage a democratic practice of green applicable to low-cost projects. Some local strategies are described in which an integrative approach was followed to provide solutions to multiple design problems.  Finally, at this point in time, Colombia is facing new challenges for the promotion of a high-quality and responsible long-term application of green roofs in the future. These challenges are described.” ~  “Pioneering Vegetated Architecture in  Colombia: From Research to Regulations,” 2011

Andres has also just finished writing the official Green Roof Guidelines of the City of Bogotá which will be soon incorporated into their sustainable building standards.  For this he reviewed the most advanced guidelines and standards worldwide, including FLL and ASTM, and came up with a unique approach for Bogotá.  Once he has the green light from the Secretary of Environment, we’ll be able to share more with you.

Yet, now we are asking for your votes from all around the world  before November 7th in support of  Andres and greenroofs as being  a finalist in the Innovadores de America – Innovators of America – contest under the Sustainability and Ecology category which:

“Includes innovative projects that contribute and provide solutions to problems related to the preservation of the environment.  Projects that contribute and in some way complement and increase sustainable development and adequate exploitation of resources, facilitating responsible and beneficial use of natural resources.” ~ Innovators 2011

Andres Ibañez  is a finalist under  Innovation: Biotectonica – Constructing life: local systems of vegetalization of infrastructure as a synergistic solution to urban environmental problems. Although the general site is in Spanish, the write up is in English as follows:

“Research, development, implementation, validation and dissemination of: local light and self-regulated systems of vegetalization of infrastructure (bio walls and bio roofs) using local waste materials and special vegetable species to improve the technical performance of buildings and create positive impact in urban areas environmentally deteriorated.

Biotectonica is the practice of building spaces with live vegetable materials instead of using conventional inert materials. The pioneer study in Colombia avoided inert materials and conventional practices in building construction and focused on the technological challenge of managing sustainable interfaces among infrastructure works and use special vegetable covers adapted to Bogota ´s climate, using local resources, recyclable, and reutilization of materials and innovative design of specialized components. We had three main objectives:

1) Achieve viability of implementation at low cost, 2) special technical applications for the buildings, and 3) produce positive impacts in deteriorated urban sites due to environmental problems.

The vegetalization systems of infrastructure developed and manufactured by Biotectonica are economical and light weight, make use of underutilized roofs and facades of buildings and offer a synergistic and economical solution to the most critical urban environmental problems: air pollution, excess water runoff, deficit of green areas, effect of heat islands, and destruction of biodiversity habitat. As of June 2011, Biotectonica had installed 5,374 square meters of its vegetalization systems in 13 buildings and had designed the adaptation of 28,387 square meters in 20 buildings. The systems are manufactured in Bogota with recycled plastic, waste bricks, compost of organic waste, industrial waste and other waste materials that comply with specific requirements of lightness, drainage capabilities, thermal insulation, acoustic insulation, and water retention. Over 20 vegetable native and adapted species have been studied and used which can be self sustainable in the developed areas, with the rain and environmental conditions of Bogota.

Several innovations to vegetalization systems and their components were applied:

1.     Light system of drainage optimization in PEAD covered for industrial productions and mass commercialization. Already in use.
2.     Adaptation of conventional construction components for implementation of low cost vegetalized infrastructure systems for low income sectors.
3.     Green wall cell system (Bio roof)
4.     Six measurements of light substratum of local granular components for various infrastructure vegetalization systems.
5.     Matrix and design and adaptation methodology for specific buildings.

The following positive impacts were achieved:

1.     Creation of a means rain water retention which guarantees reduction of at least 37% of the volume and rate of runoff water to help solve the problems of floods in the city.  
2.     Installation of a means to hold rain water which reduces the amount of rainwater in Bogota ´s sewage system by 2,953 million per year and helps with the hot weather.
3.     Creation of 5,374 square meters of green areas.
4.     Reuse of 130m of brick solid waste and industrial waste.
5.     Creation of 86.5m of compost from organic waste.
6.     Recycling of 9.3 tons of plastic.
7.     Creation of a natural means that captures approximately 1,082 tons of PM10 a year from polluted air in Bogota and other cities in Colombia
8.     Natural production of oxygen required by approximately 5,000 persons per year
9.     Implementation of an efficient means for acoustic and thermal insulation to improve conditions of more than 50,000 m of interior spaces.”  ~  Andres Ibañez, Innovadores de America 2011

Awesome work!  Here are just a few representative projects which you’ll learn more about in November:

Andres describes his company as follows:

“Biotectonics is the practice of building spaces with living material instead of using conventional inert materials.  BIOTECTONIC is a technology-based company founded in 2009 after a pioneer research of the Master of Building at the National University of Colombia.  This research was the first in the country and one of the former in Latin America to study and validate living roof technologies.  BIOTECTONICA develops and implements greening infrastructure technologies addressing the local economic, cultural and environmental challenges and taking into account the particular conditions of every single project and client.” ~  Andres Ibañez Gutierrez

Andres created a short animation last week that he translated into English, now on YouTube:

The bottom line is that we should support each other within our industry, don’t you agree?  So, please join me in voting (I already did) for Andres – only one vote each.

Let’s advance green infrastructure in Colombia and beyond…support this project with your vote now!

~ Linda V.

Are You Going to the International Green Technology Symposium in India?

October 26, 2011 at 2:49 pm

We first reported on it last March, and now the International Green Technology Symposium (Green Roof, Green City, Rain Harvesting)  is around the corner.

Held next week in Indore, India on October 31 through November 2, 2011, the Symposium is organized by Professor Suresh Billore, PhD, DSc of  GREEN TAKNIKI – Restoring Nature – the  International Symposium  on  Green Technology and held under the auspices of the World Green Infrastructure Network (WGIN) and is co-hosted by the Mayor of Indore.

This prestigious greenroof symposium is the first of its kind in India!

“Green Technology is the foremost tool to repair urbanization damage in bringing back shift in cliumate change, cool building, biodiversity, energy conservation, flood management, noise-dust-toxic gas reduction, food and water production and creation of new markets for green goods and services.” ~ International Green Technology Symposium

Twenty international and national speakers will be presenting on a variety of subjects.  WGIN President Professor Manfred Köhler of  Germany will be in attendance, along with Hitesh Doshi of Canada, and  Paul Kephart, Dhiru Thadani,  and Dr. Karen Weber of  Earth Our Only Home,  Foundation for a Green Future, and  Boston GreenFest of the U.S, among other notables – see the Speakers page here.

Details on the Symposium and participation can be found  at their website:, and in the attached updated  International Green Technology Symposium 2011 flyer.

Aramis and I would have loved to have participated, but there’s just too much going on here now.  The day tour on November 2 and 4-day post-conference tour option are going to be awesome, and we will sorely miss it!  If you are going, please take lots of photos and keep us posted!

Happy Greening in India and beyond,

Linda V.

Call for Papers: WGIN”™s International Green Technology Symposium 2011

March 23, 2011 at 10:59 pm

Professor Suresh Billore, PhD, DSc, Organizing Secretary,  has issued an open invitation to attend and participate in the World Green Infrastructure Network (WGIN) International Green Technology Symposium 2011, which will be held in Indore, India on October 31 through  November 2, 2011.

This prestigious greenroof symposium is the first of its kind in India!   Organized by GREEN TAKNIKI – Restoring Nature, the International Symposium  on  Green Technology (Green Roof, Green City, Rain Harvesting) will be held under the auspices of the World Green Infrastructure Network (with President Professor Manfred Köhler of  Germany) and co-hosted by the Mayor of Indore.

If you’re interested  in presenting a paper, please submit your extended abstract (1,000) words) by May 28, 2011 to

Professor Suresh Billore  also encourages non-paper contributors to attend, which will  include joining one full session workshop on Green Roofs, Rain Harvesting, and the LEED and GRP designations.   Tours to this exotic and  burgeoning green locate will also be offered!

Sponsorship opportunities are available.   Details on the Symposium and participation can be found  at their website:, and in the attached International Green Technology Symposium 2011 flyer.

Dates To Remember  
Receipt of Extended Abstracts: May 28, 2011
Acceptance of Extended Abstracts: June 28, 2011

Receipt of full length paper: August 1, 2011
Acceptance of full paper: August 15, 2011

Submission of Registration Form along with Registration Fee Registration fee by: August 1, 2011

Stay tuned, more info coming!

~ Linda V.