Why Biomimicry is so Cool!


Adopting Nature’s R&D

Nature has had millions of years to work on its designs and efficiencies, and it’s no wonder that humans have sought to adopt and mimic these traits for our own uses. This practice of transferring over elements or techniques from the natural world is called biomimicry, and it represents a cutting edge approach towards developing sustainable solutions to the many problems we face.

The more we observe nature, or learn about it from brilliant documentaries, the more amazed and inspired we find ourselves. It truly is awesome! So how do we get some more of this awesomeness to rub off onto us and our daily practices? Well some sharp engineers have already gotten the ball rolling, and I will share a few examples below. It’s worth remembering though, that you don’t necessarily have to be an engineer to leverage your observations of the natural world. Nature has already provided the engineering in many cases. Rather, the genius lies in being able to connect it to your very own applications. Read on and soak up the inspiration.

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A Sustainable Source of Quality Jobs

Book Recommendation

The Green Collar Economy

by Van Jones (2008)

Green Collar

Van Jones makes the case for the renewable energy sector as a force for environmental and economic good. Climate change is indeed a terrible man-made crisis, but it also presents an opportunity for societies to shed their fossil fuel dependency and offer leadership through alternatives and innovation. Globalization has transferred millions of manufacturing jobs away from developed nations towards the developing world. This need not be viewed as a bad thing for the developed states (although labour conditions in the developing world are still in need of dramatic improvement). Rather, it provides the chance for the US, and other prosperous countries, to invest in the future and expand the skills of their citizens.

Jobs in the renewable energy sector, and the “Green” industry at large, represent the new model for blue collar jobs which, by their nature, are both local and better paying. As he explains, The Green Collar Economy can therefore work towards resolving climate change, as well as being a source of meaningful, well-paying jobs that will thereby benefit the economy.  Throughout the book, Jones goes on to back up his vision with impressive facts, as well as powerful community success stories. He is also personally involved in a number of initiatives, as well as being the President & Founder of Green for All, an organization that supports the green economy and seeks to help minorities and poor communities.

We encourage our readers to borrow books when they can, but if you choose to purchase a copy click HERE to order via Amazon, and support this blog in the process. 

What is The Circular Economy?


What’s made in Bartertown, stays in Bartertown

The circular economy, much like Mad Max‘s Bartertown, represents a model by which waste is not viewed as waste, but rather a source of power or material for something else. It’s essentially a closed loop system. The circular economy currently describes a pretty amazing representation of our desire to strive for zero waste, much like the natural world itself. Rather than the conventional means of manufacturing for a single purpose, with minimal thought to a product’s end of life, “the circular economy is restorative and regenerative by design. Relying on system-wide innovation, it aims to redefine products and services to design waste out, while minimizing negative impacts. Underpinned by a transition to renewable energy sources, the circular model builds economic, natural and social capital.” – Ellen MacArthur FoundationThis means we can use more of what we create, more entirely, and find a better, more constructive use for what is left. Brilliant concept, for whom we have the planet to thank.

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The Bag of the Future


The New Temp Bag

From Bali, Indonesia comes this awesome new bag that is ready to replace the excessive and antiquated plastic version currently dominating the planet. Although other plastic bag alternates have made the claim to be biodegradable, this one is totally compostable, and can even be eaten safely by wildlife (apparently they dig it)! It’s made from Cassava root (see below), an indigenous plant that’s safely consumed by humans and animals alike, and was engineered to degrade in nature within 3 to 6 months.

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Getting Past the Plastic: Exploring Alternatives


A Worldwide Staple

Plastic is a pretty impressive material capable of providing society with all sorts of advantages, and yet it is also responsible for sitting interminably in our landfills, leeching into our soil and water sources, and chocking up our oceans. Its notable properties, that which make it so lightweight and durable, are also what make it so awful to the environment. For starters it is petroleum based for the most part, which means there’s the whole extraction factor to consider, but even beyond that, once it’s processed and manufactured into one of the countless objects we used daily, unfortunately it’s shelf-life outlasts our own.  It was designed to last, and yet it’s being used for single serving “disposable” items such as bottled drinks, product packaging, grocery bags, and children’s toys (to name but a few). Recycling isn’t quite the solution either. While it may lessen the environment impact to a certain extent, the ideal is to dramatically cut back on its use, and thereby avoid the recycling issue altogether.

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