Janine Benyus is a pioneer and champion of the Biomimicry movement and author of the influential 1997 book "Biomimicry: Innovation Inspired by Nature". Benyus draws her design inspiration from nature's wisdom and believes that we can use nature's best ideas and processes to solve human problems.
I'm sitting at a dinner table at Fortune's just-completed Brainstorm Green conference in Pasadena. Janine Benyus, the high priest of a new field called biomimicry, has drawn a little sketch of a car on a napkin. "Abalone," she writes, and draws an arrow to the windshield. "Tree frog" and an arrow toward the tires. "Lotus leaf" she connects to the side of the car. She's telling me about the many ways car designers are borrowing concepts from nature.