ASTM International Issues New Standard Guide on Vegetative Roofing Systems

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October 28, 2017

By Walt Rossiter, RCI Director of Technical Services

This past spring, ASTM International Committee D08 on Roofing and Waterproofing issued a new standard, D8014, titled Guide for Selection of Membranes Used in Vegetative Roofing Systems. The standard is under the jurisdiction of Subcommittee D08.24 on Sustainability. It is the third standard that the subcommittee has developed since its initiation about ten years ago in response to needs for sustainability standards within the North American roofing community. The other two are:

  • Standard D7851, Standard Guide for Design of Sustainable, Low-Slope Roofing Systems.
  • Standard D8013, Standard Guide for Establishing a Recycle Program for Roof Coverings, Roofing Membrane, and Shingle Materials.

The scope of D8014 reads as follows:

The purpose of this guide is to provide guidance in the selection of a suitable waterproofing membrane within a vegetative roof system. The guide offers various options for reviewing the membrane installation during and upon completion of the installation and prior to the vegetative components being installed. This guide applies to membranes that do or do not require UV protection. For the purpose of this guide, the supporting structure and roof deck are assumed to be mechanically and structurally sound and will accept the weight of the vegetative roof system, including the membrane, insulation, and other roofing/waterproofing components, including all components related to the vegetative layers as well as the required design loads. Slope to drain at the membrane level is preferred and should be included where possible. Providing a replacement or a re-cover vegetative roofing system on an existing building may require that the support structure be reinforced so that it can safely support the additional weight of the vegetative roof system and also provide the minimum live load capacity required by the building code.


Note that, as stated in the standard, the D8014 guidelines are not all-inclusive, but provide general information and procedures specific to the membrane selection process. In this regard, they are intended to supplement detailed instructions from manufacturers, other ASTM standards, and building code requirements. Development of a detailed standard, given the myriad factors associated with selecting a waterproofing membrane for a vegetative roofing system, would have been a more daunting standardization task than D08 normally undertakes.

Note also that the D8014 guidelines do not address design criteria associated with the vegetative and related components of vegetative roof systems. Design criteria for these components have been addressed in another ASTM Standard, E2777, Standard Guide for Vegetative (Green) Roof Systems.

Including the three standards developed directly within D08.24 (D7851, D8013, and D8014), the subcommittee now has jurisdiction of ten standards. A list of these standards may be accessed at: The additional seven standards within the subcommittee focus on vegetative roofing systems. They were first developed by either ASTM Committee E06 on Building Performance or Committee E60 on Sustainability. The seven were transferred to D08 in 2014, when it became clear to the committee leaders that the main ASTM expertise for vegetative roofing resided in D08.

RCI members who wish to participate in ASTM D08’s standards development activities or seek other information on the committee should contact Staff Manager Joe Hugo at All standards mentioned above may be obtained at a nominal cost from ASTM at; type the standard’s designation (e.g., D8014) in the search box.