In class lectures biomimicry and industrial ecology were things discussed. Biomimicry being that use look to nature as the model. I personally think it is a really neat idea and things that are created are really beneficial. While discussing industrial ecology like biomimicry it looks to nature’s principles and lessons as a model to help increase market competitiveness and stability with less impact and an increase in natural capital.
Janine Benyus is known for being the champion of biomimicry. She wants to use tools from nature to help manage the preservation that sustains us. We should be looking to nature on how to do things because nature has been around so long and has perfected on how to do things like collect water or looking at leaves that can inspire new kinds of paint.
Janine Benyus had an article on closed loops and a few of the examples that I thought were interesting was use waste as a resource, optimize rather than maximize, and remaining in balance with the biosphere. Using waste as a resource because we need to replenish the earth with more nutrients as we keep taking them out. A product only has two fates at the end of its cycle, either it will go to a landfill or be recycled or reused. Companies are now starting to take back their products at the end of their useful life’s to recycle them. I think that is a great idea so instead of sourcing new materials we can reuse our older products to create new ones. Another example is optimizing rather than maximize which I personally need to work on because I do not think about quality over quantity because I do like new things and I don’t do a great job a recycling all the things I go through. This part of the article mentions that we need to slow down on the throughput of materials, instead of we should be producing high-quality products and services and would be more profitable. Lastly the one that caught me while I was reading was remain in balance with the biosphere. It explained that us, as living beings we contribute our part on exhaled gases and organic matter to the earth but our byproducts go beyond that.
In our reverse lecture I focused on “gather and use energy efficiently”. The article talked about how sunlight is the best resource for energy and had an example on how leaves on the trees in mature forest are perfectly angled to get the most out of the sun as it crosses through the sky. Trees set the ceiling on what we should be doing to gather our energy as well as wind power.
Michael Pawlyn’s Ted Talk was interesting when he was explaining the closed loop system instead of it being linear. He wants to produce things like nature through architecture by using large greenhouses that are constantly changing, finding alternatives to studying high polymer buildings that weigh less than the air inside of it. I think its genius to be able to make a closed loop system by taking the waste from an item and using it for another and continuing on.
While on the asknature.org website I went to the idea part and saw an interesting article on shark-inspired surface that reduces bacterial growth without causing resistance. The surface is made up of millions of microscopic diamonds that disrupt the bacteria from growing. The surface can be used a film or top layer on germ-prone surfaces to reduce the presence of bacteria.
My current way of recycling is I have a recycling trash can at my house that I use. I keep the lights off when they are not in use or open the windows for light. I also try to purchase local food products.