Green Chemistry and the Future of How Stuff is MadePosted: June 30, 2011
I just returned from the Biomimicry Education Summit in Cleveland, which was fantastic, and explains a little lull (breather) in the blog postings. I will warn you that if I get a spare moment there will be a torrent of ideas bouncing around that have been stirred up over the last few days.
Remember the discussion about the future of materials? Biodegradability as a scenario of sustainability? On Monday morning John Warner, the godfather of green chemistry, gave a talk about his journey and the true story of how stuff could and should be made in the future.
He also shared the secrets of the future of hair dye, but you’ll have to ask him directly for that.
For those of you who haven’t had the luxury of seeing an industrial chemist spin an incredible, compelling tale about the reality of the profession, I have included one of John’s lectures below. It is an incredibly important story, because to most of us Industrial Chemistry is a pretty frightening partnership of concepts. It is a black box of science that shapes everything we do, and yet is poorly understood by most. It turns out that it is even poorly understood by the chemists, who have traditionally had absolutely no formal education in toxicology, and therefore an extremely limited understanding of the impact of the synthetic chemicals produced.
So I invite you to explore John Warner’s story, which includes connections between music composition and chemistry (which is an incredible concept). I’ll be diving into this area for more resources and ideas, there is a lot of emerging information to be explored.
John Warner runs the Warner Babcock Institute, which will, I hope, shape everything in the future.