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Inhabitat's Week in Green: artificial leaves and green roofs

Inhabitat
09.06.15
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Each week our friends at Inhabitat recap the week's most interesting green developments and clean tech news for us -- it's the Week in Green.

Silicon Valley is a hotbed for technology, but it will soon be known for green building as well. Last week architects unveiled plans to build the world's largest green roof just down the street from Apple's spaceship campus. In other architecture and design news, Sky Greens has developed a hydraulic vertical farm that can grow 10 times more produce than a traditional farm, and Caltrans proposed the largest wildlife overpass in the US for Los Angeles' 101 freeway. As much as we love to celebrate good examples of architecture, there's also fun to be had in panning bad ones -- this past week, London's "death ray" "walkie talkie" skyscraper was crowned the worst building in Britain. Summer is winding down, but there's still time for one last road trip -- and this tiny camper that telescopes to three times its size is the coolest RV we've ever seen.

Can a solar device produce water in the desert? That's the idea behind the WaterDrop, a crystalline leaf that could theoretically draw drinking water from thin air using the power of the sun. In other renewable energy news, Caltech developed a new artificial leaf that splits water to generate hydrogen fuel, and Olafur Eliasson launched a gorgeous and affordable hand-held solar charger. Energy efficiency is often hailed as the low-hanging fruit in our quest to green the grid -- this week India announce plans for a massive LED retrofit that will update 20 million streetlights with energy-saving bulbs. That adds up to $890 million in energy savings every year. And if you're headed back to school this month, don't miss out on a chance to score a Voltaic solar backpack in Inhabitat's Back to School Contest.

After years of waiting, Tesla is finally ready to launch its Model X electric SUV. Last week the automaker debuted the production vehicle and allowed pre-order customers to customize their Model X starting at $132,000. In other transportation news, it sounds like Elon Musk's SpaceX may actually be building a Hyperloop -- this past week a Redditor posted photos of what could be a test track in Hawthorne, California. Toyota gave $50 million to MIT and Stanford to develop intelligent cars that can think and learn. And just for fun, we featured an insane flying vehicle made from 54 drones that can actually lift a human.

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