Biomimicry in the Built Environment: Nature’s Answers to Our Toughest Problems

Photo credit: Tomaz Gregoric

In a fast-paced present, rushing into the future, Biomimicry is a systems-based approach to innovation and design that looks to the past. Specifically, the 3.8 billion years of research and development that nature has completed through the ages. The term “biomimicry” was coined by Janine Benyus in her 1997 book, Biomimicry: Innovation Inspired by Nature, and has inspired design improvements in the built environment ever since. By focusing on evolutionary successes, we can find solutions to many of the most complicated problems we encounter today. For the host of global sustainability issues humanity is up against – the changing climate, inadequate access to fresh water, and diminishing natural resources – nature is a lean guide to drive positive change. Read more

The Building That Goes Beyond Net Zero

Photo credit: Bullitt Center

“Please, come crap in my building.” Jason McClennan, during his inspiring TED Talks speech about the Living Building Challenge, half-jokingly says that he tells people this because of his office building’s unique bathrooms. But, what actually makes these unique? What is it about this office building that makes a positive impact on the environment when people use it? Read more