Biomimicry – A nature inspired innovation tool

It’s time to make our way home“, that is the statement made by Janine Benyus in her famous TED talk about biomimicry.

Janine is a world renown biologist, author and innovation consultant. Her first book about biomimicry was published in 1997. It is a hands-on book in which she explains how science is studying nature’s best ideas to solve our toughest 21st century problems.

Janine Benyus
Janine Benyus

What is biomimicry?

Biomimicry is the conscious study of the biological and biomechanical processes of nature as a source of inspiration for the improvement of human activities and technologies. In simpler terms, Biomimicry is a method for creating solutions to human challenges by emulating designs and ideas found in nature.

How can biomimicry be applied to everyday life?

Few people know that the high-speed train had the problem of creating a huge amount of noise generated by the displacement of air ahead of the train entering the tunnel. The Japanese team of engineers working on the issue found the solution by applying the biomimicry principles which regulate the Kingfisher birds. By adapting the shape of the train to that of Kingfisher’s beak the noise problem was resolved.

The worldwide known “Bosco Verticale” building is another great example of a biomimicry-inspired solution. It is a biomimicry-inspired building that makes the city breathe a cleaner air and reduce the emission of CO2.

900 trees, 5.000 shrubs and 11,000 floral plants have been planted over it making it a piece of sustainable art.

Nature is seen as a Model, Measure and as a Guide for the design of objects and technical products.

Nature has a simple rule: Everything is continuously part of the production chain and there are no waste.

In nature all the biological processes are:

  1. “Closed” and this means that there is no waste
  2. Based on the principle of “interconnection and cooperation”
  3. Based on solar energy
  4. Respectful of biodiversity

So, what to expect from biomimicry?

Biomimicry is a green innovation tool. Nature has nearly 4 billion years of technological innovation and refinement embodied in 10-100 million species. It has already sustainably solved a vast array of the same technological challenges facing humanity.

It should be an extremely fertile source of green technology solutions from which humanity can learn.

Biomimicry is a great opportunity we have to exploit and elevate. It is such a genius idea that teaches us how to recreate a process that works perfectly since the beginning of the world. Nature is a self-regulation system that gives us the key to exit the pollution problem.

The latest estimations tell us that, if we want to fight the climate change, by 2030 we have to change our production system and consumer behaviour. This is a fact and biomimicry as innovation is really a great chance.

Nature continues to adapt and evolve. Why we are not doing the same?

We have polluted our skies, oceans and land so much that at a certain moment the planet had to defend itself of our continuous attacks.

How? Through evolution.

The Covid-19 unfortunately is a clear example. Through our never-ending need of expansion, every day we continue to erode more forests, thus reducing the space for animals and modifying their habitat. We pollute the oceans negatively impacting fishing conditions and damaging the biodiversity balance. These are concrete, existing facts, not future possible scenarios, which have brought the Planet to protect itself from us.

Yes us, because we always consider ourselves as a separate species that leads and governs the entire world, but in reality we are just a one more of the species of mammals that inhabit the world.

We still do not know what will happen on a worldwide level. What we know for sure is how the production halt brought about by the corona virus pandemic has improved air quality and reduced the emission of CO2.

How can we exit the problem and live in a more sustainable world?

For sure Biomimicry represents a way to. It is an opportunity to growth faster and responsibly and through it we can:

  1. Re-balance the relationship between man and planet
  2. Make nature and planet important again because it becomes a source of innovation, which means evolution and business
  3. Make the human species great again with a new idea of conscious development

It’s time to make our way home

Janine benyus

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