Episode 06 - Biomimicry in the Built Environment


Discover how you can green your life by building a knowledge base of current sustainable and eco-savvy trends. This series will delve into hot topics, current standards and practices, ways to design better spaces, and specify materials that benefit not only us, as consumers, but the world as a whole. Members of CaraGreen, a sustainable materials distributor, and other industry leaders weigh in throughout the series. This is Build Green, Live Green.

This episode will discuss biomimicry and how it is imperative in sustainable design practices. We are here today with Jessica McNaughton and Kim Loftis of CaraGreen, our shows producer and sustainability think tank.

JESSICA: Hi, this is Jessica.

KIM: And this is Kim.

JESSICA: We are here with our podcast, Build Green Live Green. This is episode 6.

KIM: Yes! Today we are going to be talking about biomimicry which is a really interesting subject and we are excited to talk to you guys about it today.  So, biomimicry is basically looking at nature and learning from nature so bugs, plants, animals, how they are designed and their processes and how we can look at those processes and figure out how to invent things better, design things better. Just using nature as inspiration. And learning what they have learned over the past 4 billion years of evolution, they have changed and evolve and learn how to do things in the best and most efficient way and to be sustainable.

JESSICA: So, a lot of research on Biomimicry that's being done today is being done at the Biomimicry Guild which is established by two biologists, Janine Benyus and Dr. Dayna Baumeister in 1998. There are some really good YouTube videos and talks and presentations-

KIM: There’s a great TED talk by Janine.

JESSICA: -on biomimicry.

KIM: Yeah, it's really interesting.

JESSICA:  So, I think we should talk about the word biomimicry. It's very literal in its translation.

KIM: Yeah.

JESSICA: Bio, meaning nature, and mimic, meaning copy, so as you said, it's taking something like a leaf, which is a great example that Benyus uses, and compare it to the greatest water distribution system. So, when you really drill down into the structure of a leaf you see these capillary systems that are totally optimized for photosynthesis or survival but really just kind of a way you can see so clearly how nature has evolved to optimize the performance of that structure.

KIM:  Absolutely, so we are going to talk about a lot of different examples today to help our listeners kind of understand exactly what biomimicry is and to kind of get their brains going, too. It's really exciting to think about the ways that we can look at nature and be inspired by them.

JESSICA: Right, and there are two ways Biomimicry works the way I see it and have read up on it. One is observing something in nature and being fascinated by it, intrigued by it and just wondering how you can implement that in a different way, in a man-made way. So, why does this inchworm move so well, and could I create a child toy that does the same thing?

KIM: Sure.

JESSICA: So, observing nature and acting upon it, that’s biomimicry, but also being presented with a problem and solving it by looking at nature.

KIM: Right.

JESSICA: So, going to nature and basically asking this 4 billion-year-old natural Yoda how you should be doing something better.

KIM: And we use to be inspired by nature all the time and as humans, we kind of got away from that as we become more socialized and we rely more on technology. We have gotten away from what really does work best. Nature has already figured out a way to be sustainable, so we are kind of getting back to that with the building industry, with the green building movement on how do we become the most sustainable, how do we create these sustainable environments, when really, we just need to get back to basics and be inspired by what is around us.

JESSICA: So, you started talking about the built environment and I think it’s important for our listeners to know we are not talking about biomimicry so you can see an ant carry half a sandwich cross the lawn and wonder, “hey how is he built so he can lift that sandwich?” We are not just talking about that, it goes further into the built environment where there is actually a field of architecture now called biomimetic architecture, so buildings are being designed mimicking nature as an entire field of architecture. So, biomimicry is not a flash in the pan idea, it’s a fundamental shift in the way we are building things.

KIM: Absolutely.

JESSICA: And the way we are looking at architecture among other things.

KIM: So, there are some really great rating systems and things like that that are coming to the forefront as well, which we will talk about a little bit later in the podcast too.

JESSICA: Right. So, we are looking at biomimetic architecture and biomimicry in the built environment because that's our field that CaraGreen is in, building products, and we like to see how people can make building products better. And you know, while a lot of our materials have recycled content, the idea of using biomimicry is something we have just started to see in our product lines. Like Havelock Wool, which uses biomimicry in how it controls moisture within a wall cavity.  Biomimicry really can be done in 3 different ways, right?

KIM: Yeah, so, there is form function and full system do you want to explain the differences between those three?

JESSICA: Sure, so biomimicry in form is like that Bullet Train. You have this Bullet Train in Japan that’s amazing. It goes so fast, but it makes this unbearable sound when it comes out of a tunnel. Because it's so fast, and the way it is shaped. So, they didn't plan on this, but the engineer of the train, the guy driving the train, is a bird fanatic so he knows the Kingfisher’s beak, is a really unique design. They designed the front of the train to emulate the Kingfisher’s beak to solve this sound problem.

KIM:  And it also makes the train go faster and use a lot less energy as well, so they are solving a lot of problems they didn't know they were going to be able to solve by just being, designing with nature in mind and designing with nature as the basis of design.

JESSICA: Right, so that's an example of form, when you basically just using a shape and mimicking a shape. It’s fair to say some biomimicry crosses over form and function.

KIM:  Yeah, I think there are a lot that do that.

JESSICA: So, take burdock for an example. You know, the little burs that, you’re walking through the woods and they get stuck on you or in your hair or they get into your sister's hair-

KIM: They get stuck in your sock.

JESSICA: -and you cut it out and you end up grounded for 2 weeks.

KIM: Did that happen to you?

JESSICA: No, that may or may not have happened to me, but those burdocks, they will get attached to you. Well, so, there is a Swiss engineer walking in the woods in 1941 with his dog and he notices these burdocks getting stuck on him and he studies the structure. This is the guy who ended up inventing Velcro. So, Velcro copies the form of that burdock, those little hooks, but there is also a function of the burdock, which is, it is meant to attach to something, to be brought to a different area so that it can drop and seed there and grow there. So, the burdock has that form and function, which can both be copied and would be considered biomimicry.

KIM: And there is the full system which is the larger scale than the first 2 that we talked about. So, this is more on an ecosystem scale so some of the stuff we already mentioned, like designing buildings where they are mimicking a whole system or designing cities where they are mimicking a whole ecosystem and considering everything that is in an ecosystem in mind not just one aspect or one building material.

JESSICA:  Right, so, when you talk about biomimicry of an ecosystem you kind of have to set the stage for the ecosystem. So, let’s talk about a forest, right? So, you have got a forest that has this canopy of leaves that are collecting sunlight, which is pulling carbon dioxide out of the air, sequestering it in the tree, and then leaves drop on the ground, animals die on the ground, plants die on the ground, and that breaks down, sometimes there is a certain fungus that can help break that down faster. So, that breaks that down into fuel, food, basically, for the tree, so the tree grows. So, it’s a completely self-contained ecosystem, so the animals are a part of it, the soil is part of it, the tree is part of it, the sun is part of it. Yeah, so, the utopian biomimicry, the ideal, is having a building, a community, a neighborhood, a city that was totally sustainable, that function like that ecosystem. And we are taking steps to get there, there is a ways to go but I think starting with this biomimicry conversation, those are all the pieces that are going to come together, all those biomimicries of form, all those biomimicries of function, are what are going to come together to create this whole ecosystem.

KIM: Absolutely. So, let's give a few more examples, maybe let’s give one more example of a function.

JESSICA:  How about the ant carrying a half a sandwich, right? So, ants can carry five thousand times their weight. That's not normal. There’s got to be something that is going on there that allows that to happen. Ants are very fascinating to scientists for a bunch of different reasons. But this one specifically, they basically dissected and broke down an ant.  You have tools that can get down to a molecular level now and can look at this stuff.  But what they found was where the soft material of the ant’s neck and the hard material their head meet, usually there is a large amount of stress there. But somehow the ants have this graded transition between the soft part of their neck and the hard part of their head that gives them enhanced performance that lets them carry this amount of weight. And then they also looked further where the head and the neck and chest joint come together, and it’s also got these bumps and hairs going in all these different directions and now all those hairs and connection points allow that stress to be spread out, and that together is what allows them to carry that half a sandwich-

KIM:  That's amazing.

JESSICA: -away from your picnic basket.

KIM:  So, ant colonies, as well, have been looked at and have inspired lots of different things, so leadership and management has actually been used in industries to teach people how to lead and manage other people.

JESSICA:  By watching ants, you can-

KIM:  Yes, by watching ants and how they have their colony structured.

JESSICA: So, like maybe how they delegate things? Okay, interesting.

KIM: And then networks, as well. So, the internet protocol actually copies the same protocol that ants use. It dispatches ants similarly to how we allocate bandwidth.

JESSICA: Another interesting one for the ant colonies that they studied is, they called it the Anternet, and its a Stanford study that show that the way that the ants dispatch a certain number of ants to certain areas based on the need mimics how we allocate bandwidths on our networks like our network protocols on bandwidth, so studying that further can show you ways on how to optimize bandwidth and allocate bandwidth base on how these ants have been doing it, again, over 4 billion years of learning.

KIM:  Right.

JESSICA:  The last example I will give is one I found really interesting about the leaf-cutter ants, so they are ants that literally cut these leaves. Well, they take these leaves that they have cut back to their nests and they place the leaves down on this bed of fungus that they have. Its kind of honeycomb-shaped and the fungus helps those leaves breakdown, so it turns them into food faster. So, the combination of leaves that the ants bring, and that fungus allow a high-speed reaction that breaks it down into food for them quicker.

KIM: So, it’s basically digesting it for them, so they don't have to spend the energy doing that part they just consume it after it is already broken down.

JESSICA:  Right, or getting it to the part where they can consume it. What that can be used for are biofuels, right? So, that's a really interesting area of study in biofuels where they are looking at the leaf-cutter ant.

KIM: That's amazing.

JESSICA: I think an interesting thing about biomimicry is that it can solve major problems. So, one of the biggest problems we have, obviously, we have pollution issues which we have talked about, but water scarcity is another big thing that's coming with climate change.

KIM: Yeah, and its definitely something we don't think about, especially here, when you can turn on the faucet and you get clean water, turn on the shower and you immediately have hot water is something we definitely take for granted and there is a lot of information out there that there’s eventually going to be a water war and its going to be such a big problem if we don't do something about it.

JESSICA:  So, a lot of researchers and scientists are looking at ways to more efficiently harvest water. So, one of the most interesting things has been looking at animals that survive in these airid climates and figuring out how are they getting water. And one of the creatures that they have studied is the Namib desert beetle and it will sit on a sand dune, facing the sea, so its kind of angled, and it’s got these little bumps on it’s back. They are hydrophilic bumps and it channels the way water moves, and it brings in a lot of water. So, the fog or the seawater condenses on this beetle’s back because of these little microstructures and has a channel that channels water right down to it’s mouth. So, just studying this beetle has allowed scientists to come up with, you know, basically, you could have these giant panels that are similar to this desert beetle that are channeling water into a cistern or whatever. Just that simple beetle, one thing has led them to this new idea about how to harvest water.  Another structure that’s been studied for water harvesting is the rice leaf. And the structure of the rice leaf is such that it channels water in one direction, but it can’t go in the other. And it also, like the desert beetle, has this microscale roughness. So, again, allowing more water to condense on the surface and then channel it in a direction. And then you know about the pitcher plant.

KIM: Yeah, it’s actually native here in North Carolina. It’s a carnivorous plant that a cupped open leaf that opens up to the sky so that water can go straight down into the pitcher and it slides straight down the sides because of this kind of film that it has on the edges of the pitcher.

JESSICA: Right, so, that basically makes it a frictionless wall in the way that water reacts with the structure of the leaf- it’s frictionless. So, if you’re a frog-

KIM: -can’t get out.

JESSICA: You’re out of luck. I am sorry. But that’s an interesting way that it captures its prey but, it also, it also withstands hot and cold weather and it’s got this ability to, kind of, pull this water into its surface.

KIM: And I think that’s a cool example as well because there are multiple things in this single plant that we can be inspired by. The water harvesting, the fact that it can withstand different climates, so we can take multiple aspects from single things in nature.

JESSICA: Yeah, exactly. And that’s exactly what was done by this study in Penn State and University of Texas. They took this slippery surface, or they mimic slippery surface of the pitcher plant, and then the ability of the rice leaf to kind of channel and attract that water and they came up with this, they call it the SRS- slippery rough surface. Probably not the most creative name, but anyway that’s what it is and it’s got these grooves with that microscale roughness we talked about and it allows it to attract more water. So, they studied it against two other surfaces that have been developed and you can just see these huge water droplets on the surface of it.

KIM: Yeah, we were looking at pictures the other day and you could really see, very starkly, the difference between the sizes of water droplets that they were getting from their studies.

JESSICA: So, that’s a great example of how you can take a societal issue and solve it by looking at nature. So, water scarcity, you now have these elements of nature that can show you how you can pull more water out of the air more efficiently to provide more water to these communities that may not have it.

KIM: It’s really exciting to think about these things being used on the built-environment level because we can solve these big problems. And biomimicry in the built environment is something that is really becoming a lot more popular and we’ll talk about, like we mentioned already, toward the end of the podcast, some of the rating systems or some of the really exciting things that we’re seeing people do in this industry. And this is again a larger-scale kind of ecosystem-size that we are talking about here. So, we’ll talk about some examples of how biomimicry has been used in building materials and then at the system level as well.

JESSICA: Right, so, one of the things that we’re going to do at Care Green is we’ve developed a biomimicry continuing education course. So, if you’re an architect, or designer, or just interested person and you want to hear more about biomimicry and see some examples with some images to kind of tie this together, that will be available on our website caragreen.com in the education section, you’ll be able to see the course description, and so on, so if you are interested in that go to our website. Alright I am going to elaborate a little bit on the building because some of this is already happening and when I lived in Hong Kong it was right around the time of the Beijing Olympics and one of the most talked about buildings. There was a couple, there was the Bird’s Nest, and there was one that actually looked like soap bubbles, so, um-

KIM: Oh, I don’t remember that, I guess the Bird’s Nest got the most attention.

JESSICA: So, the soap bubbles, it’s kind of like bone structure, so a lot of people are looking at bones because bone and egg shells, they are minerals and proteins, but they’re together in such a way that they are incredibly strong but lightweight, so they are trying to mimic that. So, bones are stronger than steel on an ounce basic.

KIM: I would have never guessed that.

JESSICA: The reason I bring up bones and egg shells is because collagen, which is a protein, the way the minerals lines up on the protein for the bones are the minerals deposit along the protein itself. But with the egg shells the mineral deposit outward, like kind of perpendicular from the protein. If you can combine those two things you could have an incredibly strong structure. So that’s what a lot of scientists and researchers are looking at. Why would you need a light weight structure? Think about these skyscrapers and the highest building you’re getting. You can go way higher.

KIM: Absolutely.

JESSICA: It will change wind shear, all that stuff because you have got this really natural structure.

KIM: And really great for bridges too.

JESSICA: In an environmental this is important it is because we use so much concrete in our construction right now. And concrete is responsible for ten percent of global carbon dioxide emissions and that’s mostly because of cement.

KIM: And we’ve talked in previous podcast of how much the building industry has an effect on our environment and it’s a massive amount. So taking a little bit of responsibility in our industry for the impact that we have on the environment is really important.

JESSICA: Right, so looking specifically at concrete it uses so much energy in its formation. If you could make the structural material, instead of concrete, this bone-eggshell combination, well, things that form in nature are done with very little energy, they are done at room temperature. So, you don’t need these thousands of degrees to form these materials. Steel, concrete, things like that, you got this room temperature material can be formed. That’s really exiting. That’s one of the most interesting things about mimicking nature. If you can do it without a lot of energy as nature performs-

KIM: Absolutely.

JESSICA: -they don’t have this introduction of artificial energy, it makes it really exciting. So-

KIM: Seeing changes in a lot of realms. You’re more efficient, you’re using less energy, you’re more lightweight, you are stronger, you’re getting lots of benefits there.

JESSICA: Yeah, so you’re talking about building structure that are mimicking the structure of bone, mimicking the structure by using eggshell, using lightweight materials, but incredibly durable, strong.

KIM: And kind of in that concrete conversation there is a company in California called Calera and they have been inspired by coral reefs and how they use CO2 to build themselves. So they're using the same process, they're mimicking that process, and using CO2 as a building block in the concrete so it actually sequesters CO2 instead of emitting CO2.

JESSICA: Is this the facility that generates CO2 and then recaptures it?

KIM: I'm not sure about their facilities generating the CO2 but I know that they are pulling carbon basically out of the air to create these, kind of, concrete-type products.

JESSICA: Okay, so that was different than the one that has the facility attached to it where they are creating those limestones?

KIM: Yes, it is different.

JESSICA: Oh, okay, wow. There’s another one in California that's basically taking its own carbon that’s generated from its waste and sequestering it into these limestones blocks that could use for construction as well.

KIM: Right, yes, yes.

JESSICA: Leave it to California!

KIM: Always leading the way, somebody is got to do it.

JESSICA: Yep, but one of the things that's interesting I think for building materials too, and looking at the bone structure, bone itself healing, and so one of the technologies that's being developed is steel that mimics bone’s lattice structure but it’s also self-healing. 

KIM: Oh, wow!

JESSICA: So that is in development but it’s really, I mean that could be just revolutionary, right?

KIM: Yes, that's kind of utopian sounding.

JESSICA: And all of this, unfortunately, we are very protective of our citizens and our residents, we don't want to throw someone through into a bone building and have it collapse on them, right, so there's a lot of testing that needs to be done here.

KIM: Building codes.

JESSICA: Codes need to change. So, this is potentially a long way out, but there are some examples of buildings that have mimicked natures that are in existence today and are fully occupied and incredibly successful.

KIM: Absolutely, so there is a really interesting one in Zimbabwe. It's their largest office and shopping center complex, it was modeled after termite dens.

JESSICA: Yes, so I love this termite den scenario. So, termites who all I think about is just wrecking my house and costing me money, every time I have to pay to get an inspection. This might be a North Carolina problem, so I apologize to people who don't have this issue, but the dens they live in, specifically these African termites, they drill these, like, eating and cooling shafts in them and they regulate the air temperature in them and it can be 104 degrees outside and keep it at this set temperature- 87 degrees Fahrenheit.

KIM: Wow!

JESSICA: Why 87 degrees? that sounds hot for us, but it’s perfect for these termites. They live off of fungus that has to be 87 degrees Fahrenheit, so they are constantly building shutting off, re-drilling these tunnels.

KIM: To keep it regulated.

JESSICA: Yes, so their goal in life is not really to destroy my house, it’s to keep this fungus alive.

KIM: Yeah.

JESSICA: Well, in Africa, anyway, the temperature fluctuates from 35 degrees to 104 degrees and they keep that den at 87 degrees. I mean these guys are working full time.

KIM: That's amazing.

JESSICA: Yes, it’s like mission control and they just inherently know where to drill to keep the heat coming and cool air going. Yes, we all know heat rises and all that stuff.

KIM: Sure.

JESSICA: But, so, this was mimicked in this building, the Eastgate Center, which is the one in Zimbabwe. They pull air in on the ground floor using fans and push that through the building to each floor, there’s a vent in each floor, ultimately it goes out through these chimneys.

KIM: Sure.

JESSICA: But they're constantly circulating the air, the fresh air is replacing the stale air, it's regulating the temperature, its ventilating, but guess how much it saved so far? 3 million dollars they've saved, and they use less than 10 percent of the energy of the building had they not put this system in place. They use 10 percent.

KIM: Fascinating.

JESSICA: Yeah, yeah, so, it’s been done. I would love to see that kind of thing replicated.

KIM: Yeah!

JESSICA: But, you know, there's a lot of studies around that, and it’s just, as biomimicry comes the forefront and you know we like to be at the head of these things in the building world, right? We like to be the educator on the latest hot topic, which is why we're doing this, but you know I expect to see more and more of these buildings and as we do, we’ll add those to our presentation and keep it updated.

KIM: Yes, I'm actually thinking of when I visited my sister in Peru, she lived there for a while, all the buildings there are very open, not only did they open there windows a lot but almost all of them have an atrium and the middle of the building and it’s not a closed atrium, it literally does not have a roof. And it just circulates the whole building, and everything is always really comfortable because there is always this natural air flow, so, just kind of maximizing the climate that you do have and using it to your advantage, I think is a very simple kind of rule about buildings in general.

JESSICA: You bring up an interesting point about biomimicry. You may not be able to go to Africa and look at what they're doing there and emulate it in your ecosystem because you may need something different.

KIM: Exactly.

JESSICA: So, looking at your local climate, yeah.

KIM: Yeah.

JESSICA: That may be your solution there.

KIM: Yep.

JESSICA: You can't just- I wouldn’t want to imply that you can go look at how somethings behaving in one area and apply it to another.

KIM: Sure.

JESSICA: It is a science. The ideal scenario is this termite den one, right, I mean it's not ideal but this what we are trying to get to. We think that buildings can get there; I think that the Living Building Challenge has done the best job of putting a program in place. The goal is to have buildings perform, they actually say it should function as cleanly and efficiently as a flower, so that's kind of their motto. And the way they set themselves up is that they have seven performance categories each one is called a pedal.

KIM: Perfect.

JESSICA: Yes, but the fact of their comparing themselves to flower, that's biomimicry at its core.

KIM: Right, so the Living Building Challenge is basically trying to inspire people and create a system where they're creating regenerative spaces and buildings, making them self-sufficient and also making them healthy and beautiful. So, it's not about having solar panels and geothermal for creating a building that's not going to uses much energy it’s also about the aesthetics too, thinking back to the flower, creating something that's beautiful and beneficial.

JESSICA: Okay, and I think that you said regenerative, so these buildings actually give back so there’s a great example- the Bullet Center is one that actually gives electricity back to the grid. So, it creates more electricity than it uses. And then I think one of the tenets of the Living Building Challenge is that you use the resources that are within your immediate area, so you're not using resources being the site that you’re on. The Living Building Challenge is an interesting topic, it may be our next podcast topic because we’re seeing a lot more interest in it really, it’s where biomimicry will land.

KIM: Yes.

JESSICA: Right, it is the desire to be compared to a flower and the way to get a building to truly be a complete ecosystem and even go further and give back is the Living Building Challenge.

KIM: Absolutely, and what we see with a lot of these rating system that comes out which, we've seen happen pretty much every time LEED has come out with a new version, there's a lot of pushback.

JESSICA: Right and we've covered WELL on our other podcast which is our website caragreen.com.

KIM: Yes, yes, but there is initially some pushback but with Living Building Challenge and the new facts that we know about global warming and climate change, there's really no other way to do things so I think we're going to see this really growing over the next 3 years and people really adopting this way of design.

JESSICA: Yes, and I like to see the words healthy and beautiful in the Living Building Challenge because I haven't read too much on Living Building Challenge because, as you said, its, it's early and I think people are still just kind of jumping on the WELL bandwagon.

KIM: I think so.

JESSICA: But to see healthy and beautiful in there are great because the WELL Building Standard is about health, and we've covered that, but when it comes to beautiful, I think that's where we've done a good job, at CaraGreen, of going out and finding those products that are healthy and beautiful and that's something that we have concentrated on so much and it’s so good to see a building standard that recognizes that people don't have to compromise between those two things.

KIM: Yes.

JESSICA: Alright so what about the architecture firms, you said there is biomimetic architecture, but is there is a biomimetic architecture firm or is it something that firms are adopting?

KIM: I think it is something that firms are adopting, HOK is actually partnered with the Biomimicry Guild. And HOK is a very large architecture firm who holds a huge place in this building space.

JESSICA: They are all over the place.

KIM: They are all over, they are global, and they, you know, build a lot of very large structures and are even helping kind of design cities that go back to what we talked about earlier where you're designing like an ecosystem.

JESSICA: Right, and these guys were at the forefront of sustainability.

KIM: Yes.

JESSICA: Green building, eco-friendly, putting some of these transparency things in place. They were one of the first that came out and said, “you need to tell me what's in your building products.”

KIM: Yes.

JESSICA: I thought that was really great so they're, they're very progressive.

KIM: Yes, so HOK is basically using the clout that they have built over the years to kind of push this industry forward and really take and push forward this advantage.

JESSICA: That's great, alright so we should expect HOK, partnering with the Biomimicry Guild, to start to drive sort of this look at how whole cities can be these sustainable ecosystems.

KIM: Absolutely.

JESSICA: It’s great to know that an architecture firm is looking at things that way.

KIM: Yes.

JESSICA: That kind of ties a bow around this whole thing, and it makes it realize that building products are looking at it, they're looking at it from the building standpoint, and the architects are looking at it in driving it from the city’s standpoint.

KIM: Yes.

JESSICA: So, this will coupled with the Living Building Challenge, in some of the infrastructure they put around this, this can happen.

KIM: Absolutely.

JESSICA: And it all traces its roots back to biomimicry.  

KIM: Yes, nature has been performing this way for, what did we say, 4 billion years.


KIM: So, we just need to continue to be inspired by nature and take our design advice from nature as well.

JESSICA: Yes, so as I said we took a pretty in-depth look at this in our biomimicry presentation that we have for AIA credit, if there is architect or designers listening, that need the continuing education credit, we're happy to come in and give that presentation. We think that biomimicry is going to really push the next wave in the built environment.

KIM: Absolutely, I'm excited to see what products come out of it that are going to end up landing on our plates and excited to see people in the industry as well and what they come up with.

JESSICA: Yep. That's the Build Green Live Green podcast and we look forward to talking to you next time.

KIM: Thanks for joining us.

We offer many education courses for design professionals, with one specifically detailing biomimicry. Others talk about current building standards and their principles. Check out our website at www.caragreen.com to see our full offering of continuing education courses which are eligible to earn AIA, IDCEC, and GBCI credit as well as our full range of sustainable design materials.

For a written manuscript of this episode, as well as supporting resources, visit our website at www.caragreen.com/podcast. Want to know more about a specific industry related topic? Shoot us an email at social@caragreen.com.