Thursday, October 22, 2015

Looking at Nature Can Help Your Brain Work Better

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Carraba's Green Roof - Gainesville, FL
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While still relatively novel in the United States, so-called “green roofs” — urban rooftops covered with grasses, plants and other types of greenery — are becoming increasingly popular around the world.

In France, newly built commercial rooftops must sport either greenery or solar panels, according to a recent law. Facebook, meanwhile, recently installed a massive 9-acre green roof at its office in Menlo Park, Calif.

The logic is obvious: Green roofs can reduce the retention of heat in urban areas, help to cool down buildings and thereby lower their energy use, and even pull some carbon dioxide from the air and feed it back into plant growth.

In a study published in the journal Environmental Psychology, the University of Melbourne’s Kate Lee and a group of colleagues found that interrupting a tedious, attention-demanding task with a 40-second “microbreak” — in which one simply looks at a computerized image of a green roof — improved focus as well as subsequent performance on the task.  Read the entire article.

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