Industrial ecology is the idea that we can use biomimicry, or taking ideas from the natural world around us to solve our problems, in the way that we make, sell, buy, and market everything. We have spent every moment since the Industrial Revolution creating things that are not compatible with nature, and these pollutants are slowly destroying an environment that we ourselves are apart of. Industrial ecology seeks to replace those man made contaminants with natural products that will have no harmful affect on the environment. Many companies are not only realizing their mistake, but are seeking to correct it by employing the idea of industrial ecology and biomimicry to their business and products. This is because they realized that we are not separate from nature, and if it suffers, then we all do.
If we are to continue to grow, evolve, and thrive, then we have to stop thinking of ourselves as separate from nature, especially when it comes to industry. Many industries seek to satisfy their consumers and the growing need for their products, but they need to be held accountable for the means that they use to satisfy that need and the effect it has on the environment. We need to think of the cradle to cradle concept as well as the concept of zero waste and apply them not only to our personal lives but to our consumerist industry as well.
I believe that we should take a cue from nature and learn from our mistakes while focusing on the things that work and employing the lessons we gain from experience. By following the life principals of evolving to survive and adapting to changing conditions we are able to focus on our growth in a positive and empowering way, because we are able to take charge of our surroundings or circumstances. I am still learning this principle, but it is one that I have kept in the forefront of my mind throughout my life. This is also applicable to merchandising; in a world that is becoming more and more eco-friendly and environmentally conscious, we have to adapt our retail spaces to follow new trends and regulations. This can include things like energy consumption, recycling of waste, and monitoring the use of natural resources.
In the end, we must take a cute from what nature has already done. Nature has solved every problem we have and will ever have, and by studying nature we are able to take inspiration from nature and use it in our every day lives.