New Green Oasis

California Academy of Science building

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The California Academy of Science's building is being unveiled this week, and it's truly a work of wonder.

It's been under construction for three years, and set to open on September 27.

After spending close to $500 million dollars, it's not surprising that it's pretty schmick.

The list of green accomplishments reads like the bible of green building.

There's a museum, green roofs (2.5 acres of natives), 60,000 photovoltaic cells (the most efficient ones available, mind you) whose batteries are charged by flowing water from the bathrooms.

There's also a rainforest, an aquarium (in salt water pumped straight from the Pacific), and a planetarium that fits under the living roof (See more photos on the Inhabitat site).

It also cleverly diverts 98% of stormwater runoff to the green roof, instead of sending it into the drains.

Among other things, it has LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) 'platinum' certification from the US Green Building Council - the highest rating.

Its website says it will "consume 30-35% less energy than required by [building] codes."

And they even recycled 90% of the demolition waste.

It's another innovation from some savvy green Californians.