Nature outrunning science when it comes to solving environmental problems.

Anyone who starts studying nature starts out freaking out about what great environmental damage we are doing to the planet, and the more they learn the more they realize that this planet is incredibly resilient and will survive long after humans have ceased to be anything more than the molecular stardust we started out as.

Then the second wave freak out begins when we realize that the damage we are doing will be survived by the planet, but not by us or many other creatures….unless of course we come up with a fix.

As all Permaculturists know, the best designs start by observing nature. This includes designs to fix our previous errors. This pattern was reinforced again on September 29, 2015 when Stanford News published this report, which describes a study that found that the common meal worm, not only can survive by eating Styrofoam…but biodegrades it the equivalent of what hundreds of years in a landfill would, IN JUSTĀ  24 HOURS!

Don’t misunderstand this statement…Styrofoam still sucks in the environment, but now we have a natural path to recycling it. Its just a matter of time before some enterprising young person starts recycling urban Styrofoam to feed meal worms that feed his chickens whose eggs tend to go in a Styrofoam (or cardboard which is also biodegradable by meal worms and beetles) and closes this waste loop forever.

The point of this little article is just what the title alludes to. The answers to all of our problems are in nature. This planet has been developing for billions of years. While I am sure we are throwing some new problems at it, natural selection and adaptation are highly efficient means of solving them; and quite frankly most of the problems we are creating are only problems because they fly in the face of natural processes to begin with.

I do feel the need to mention that this article is not meant in any way shape or form to discredit modern science. Scientific method is not the problem. People who want to apply technology before they have a reasonably good idea what will come of it are. Science discovered this natural solution just like it created the problem…and it sometimes solves problems that were created outside of its gates.

At any rate…learn something new today and share it. Oh and Grow something!

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