Let's face it : global warming and its attendant sea level rise isn't exactly an inspiring topic. Most days, we're not forced to think about what it will really mean to millions of people around the world who will lose their homes - literally, the ground on which they live - due to the 1m water level surge.
It's projects like this one, LILYPAD by Vincent Callebaut, that remind me of the power of design. While this self-sustaining, bio-inspired floating microcosm may seem outlandish in many ways - how will it practically be engineered, who would take the risk to invest in it, and how many gazillions will it cost - it's the outlandishness that I like about it. In order to solve the intense problems facing our planet, we need to dream without constraint, to imagine without tether in order to transform our anxiety into action.
While LILYPAD is currently floating through a ton of architecure and eco blogs at the moment, here are the highlights and links to other blogs that are featuring it :
via Archinect - described as an Ecopolis for Ecological Refugees, LILYPAD is meant to be auto-sufficient, using a coctail of energy technologies to produce more energy than it uses [ solar, thermal and photovoltaic energies, wind energy, hydraulic, tidal power station, osmotic energies, phytopurification, biomass ].
via Inhabitat - with the form of an aquatic leaf, the LILYPAD can either be 'docked' near a developed coastline or be responsive to the Gulf Stream, free to travel from the equator into the northern seas. it will house up to 50,000 people and will incorporate varied terrains + venues in order to ensure bio + programatic diversity.