In a recent talk, University of Iowa researcher Vicki H. Grassian highlighted the connection between understanding how nature operates on a molecular level, and understanding our global environment. One example she used was the successful research done on the chemistry of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) (and how they can destroy ozone). This research led to policies that have stabilized the ozone layer. She illustrates that through understanding the molecular mechanisms at work we can understand and adjust our impact. This fits nicely with other ideas in sustainable design; biomimicry, constructal theory, and even cradle to cradle all incorporate elements of molecular design and how important design is to building a sustainable tomorrow. Vicki Grassian added:
"For example, there should be a design function of molecular assembly and disassembly and other strategies employed to safely degrade and recycle the materials contained in outdated computers so that they don't end up in landfills,"
::University of Iowa News