Innovation That Matters

Greencity Solutions uses moss to clean urban air | Photo source Zach Reiner on Unsplash

Moss wall biofilters clean and cool city air


The plants absorb fine particulates as well as carbon dioxide


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Spotted: Moss is a highly efficient, natural air filter, attracting tiny dust particles to its fine, dense leaves. The plant biodegrades, stores, and eats airborne particles such as soot, ammonium salts, carbon dioxide, and pollen, all of which are harmful to human health. Moss also absorbs warm air, producing a local cooling effect as heat evaporates.  

Greencity Solutions tested 16,000 species of moss to find the most effective ones for use in moss wall biofilters. Living walls are becoming more common architectural features, and with the new moss version, cities have an improved ability to bring the fresh smell and clean air of a forest to crowded, busy locations. After removing the pollution and decreasing the temperature of the air, the moss releases cleaned, cooled air. The effects can be measured up to one and a half metres away from the wall.

Greencity’s three solutions are the CityTree, CityBreeze, and WallBreeze. All three designs use internet of things (IoT) technology to track local conditions and footfall and are connected to a proprietary, cloud-based data platform that automates irrigation and tracks plant growth and health.

The CityTree is a freestanding pillar with a bench that cleans air from all angles. The pillar includes space for an LED screen or poster, allowing owners to customise and change messaging. The CityBreeze is a slimmer design created for high-traffic areas such as train platforms, shopping centres, and car parks. One side is a moss wall and one side is a 75-inch LED screen for high-resolution communication. The WallBreeze is fitted onto a wall, and up to 25 panels can be connected for management by a single account on the data platform.

Springwise has spotted a range of green wall innovations, with some more experimental and in early stages, such as 3D printing with soil, and others that are well-developed, policy-focused solutions seeking immediate, permanent change. That latter includes an organisation in Spain working with local governments to expand the numbers of green roofs.  

Written By: Keely Khoury



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