New York City is fielding proposals from universities to build a new science and technology campus on Roosevelt Island, and the competition is showing how desirable green buildings are becoming.

The two front-runners, Cornell and Stanford, are falling over themselves to offer all manner of green features in their plans: acres of solar panels, geothermal wells, net zero energy buildings, a marsh to filter water, green roofs, and storm runoff recycling. One campus would generate 1.8 megawatts of power. If every new building in New York had this much green swag, the city would cut down its carbon use in no time.