Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Biological Engineering

Degree Level



Biological and Agricultural Engineering


Runkle, Benjamin

Committee Member/Reader

Haggard, Brian

Committee Member/Second Reader

Savin, Mary


The Hillside Auditorium Green Roof is a low impact development feature on the University of Arkansas campus. It retains storm water and allows plants living on the roof to take up and transpire the water. Green roofs work to mimic natural ecosystems in urban environments. A key property is ecosystem respiration, which plays a large role in the global carbon cycle and is an important biologic activity indicator. The ecosystem respiration of Hillside Auditorium Green Roof was compared to a typical grassland ecosystem at the University of Arkansas farm to determine how closely the green roof is able to mimic this ecosystem. The CO2 flux was compared to multiple parameters, such as soil temperature, soil moisture content, soil organic matter content, and amount of vegetation in testing area. The CO2 flux was found to have a positive relation with soil temperature on the green roof. There was little correlation between CO2 flux and soil moisture content on the green roof. There was a significant relationship between the CO2 flux and soil moisture content at the BENG Lab. In theory, increased amounts of organic matter will increase the flux of CO2 from the soil; however, the two study locations were found to have similar organic matter contents, and a conclusion could not be drawn if amount of organic matter caused a higher flux rate or not. The amount of vegetation in the study area will increase the amount of respiration and therefore increase the CO2 flux. Overall, the green roof had statistically higher rates of CO2 flux during the spring season.


carbon dioxide, ecosystem respiration, soil respiration, green roof, low impact development