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Biomimicry at 20: A hot idea finds its feet

Marc Lefkowitz  |  11/28/17 @ 2:00pm  |  Posted in Plants & animals

In the two decades since “Biomimicry: Innovation Inspired by Nature," Janine Benyus’ 1997 bestseller, hatched the idea that nature is a prolific problem solver and muse, researchers have been hard at work searching for the next generation of bio-inspired inventions.

<br />Geckos have been the subject of thousands of reports, and speculative Biomimicry research, because of their amazing ability to scale vertical surfaces.<br />Dr. Peter Niewiarowski (right) University of Akron Biomimicry Program Director discussed his research on gecko feet.

Trees gain ally: Science and Technology

Marc Lefkowitz  |  11/02/17 @ 11:00am  |  Posted in Vibrant cities, Transform, Plants & animals

“Urban Forests” author Jill Jonnes offered Cleveland an invaluable lesson on how the city earned, and then lost, its moniker ‘the Forest City.’ Speaking at Levin College of Urban Affairs yesterday, Jonnes harkened back to John Davey, the 19th century arborist from Kent, Ohio whose book “The Tree Doctor” inspired today’s 8,000-employee Kent-headquartered tree service company, Davey Tree. In a chapter in...

<br />Science and tech have shown how much street trees add to property value and perform valuable ecological services like cleaning the air and reducing flooding.

Nature is potent weapon to defeat climate change

Marc Lefkowitz  |  10/24/17 @ 2:00pm  |  Posted in Climate, Land, Plants & animals

The next time you’re in the grocery store and pick up your favorite snack food, turn the box over and look for “palm oil” in the ingredients list. A growing market for palm oil — and animal protein — is responsible for one of the largest contributors to climate change.

Tree topped<br />A 220 year old poplar tree in the University Circle district of Cleveland. This is a Moses Cleveland tree, meaning, it was a sapling when the city was founded.

Too hot to handle: Life (and death) in an age of climate change

Marc Lefkowitz  |  10/02/17 @ 4:00pm  |  Posted in Climate, Plants & animals

Scientists wielding thermal imaging tools are taking aim at rainforest depletion and its effect on vulnerable amphibian populations. It’s the pursuit of the Coburn Professor of Environmental Science at John Carroll University, Dr. James Watling, who leads a team of investigators in Columbia’s Magdalena River Valley. In the big picture, human activity has altered 43% of the earth’s terrestrial land,...

<br />Forest converted to agriculture in Columbia. Image: James Watling.

Natural Cleveland: December and January

Jill Collins  |  12/18/15 @ 2:00pm  |  Posted in Explore, Plants & animals, Natural Cleveland

A lot of people think "Cleveland" and "nature" are mutually exclusive. But they're not—by a long shot. Everywhere you look, from cemeteries to tiny city lawns to abandoned industrial sites, nature asserts itself in Cleveland in ways both glorious and subtle. Clevelanders, like people everywhere, live on the land. We're just not as accustomed as others to seeing it. That's...

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