The new natural sciences building at Mills College in Oakland, Calif., has earned a platinum LEED rating from the U.S. Green Building Council for environmentally sensitive design. The 26,000 square-foot facility took 18 months to build at a cost of more than $17 million. The building is almost 90 percent more energy efficient than a typical lab in the Bay Area. Its green elements include recycled carpeting; automatic sensors to switch lights on or off; tall windows to increase the penetration of daylight and decrease the use of artificial lights; energy-efficient glass windows; and photovoltaic panels on the roof that provide 30 percent of the building's electrical needs. The architects are EHDD Architecture and Mills College architect Karen Fiene.