Research and analysis

Fire performance of green roofs and walls

This document provides a review of current guidance and specialist fire testing on green roofs and green wall systems.


Fire performance of green roofs and walls

This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology. Request an accessible format.

If you use assistive technology (such as a screen reader) and need a version of this document in a more accessible format, please email Please tell us what format you need. It will help us if you say what assistive technology you use.


This document illustrates the results of testing carried out on green roofs and green wall systems and provides guidance on the fire performance aspects of green roof and wall construction and maintenance.

Green roofs have been used in construction for many years, most notably in Germany, Switzerland and Austria, where the industry began in the 1960s. There is now considerable and increasing interest in establishing green roofs in the UK. Green walls, in the form of climbing plants, have also been established for centuries, however, there have been a number of new products entering the market more recently, which provide support for a wider range of plants.

The Department for Communities and Local Government commissioned Exova Warringtonfire to review current information available and conduct specialist fire testing on green roofs and green wall systems. The findings and recommendations in this report are those of the consultant authors and do not necessarily represent the views or proposed policies of the department.

Published 20 August 2013