Ayres Knowledge Center Learning From Nature | Page 5

professionals, we focus on the primary objective of making highways safe, and we tend not to think of highway design of the place, but we should. And the challenge here isn’t about the vegetation on the shoulder of the road or stormwater control for a highway. I’m talking about the means and materials. If every road looks like every road everywhere else, we probably aren’t doing a good enough job of designing of the place. Enough said. On to rule number two. 2 2: EXPECT A HIGH ROI Generally speaking, the more Nature has invested in an object or system, the more value it expects to get from its investment in terms of how long it lasts or how it supports the other parts of a system. To put it another way, Nature doesn’t typically invest a lot of energy into an object or place unless it expects that investment to result in high returns. This is true for individual structures, like a mountain or tree, or systems like a prairie or forests. Nature builds objects and systems to withstand change. 9 Here’s the funny part about this, though. Change is the investment. This doesn’t make sense, I know. Let me explain. As we discussed earlier, Nature wants objects and systems to resist change. 10 The more Nature invests in an object or system the longer it expects that something to resist change. Think of a mountain. Nature put a whole lot of energy into raising the mountain and invested a lot of mineral resources into the rocks and stones of that mountain. That mountain is a mineral bank. After building the bank, Nature then meters out the minerals through erosive techniques over a period of time. The mountain, as a whole, is durable to most forms of violent impacts over the long turn. Even when a mountain is hit by tornadoes, hurricanes, or even subsequent volcanoes, most of the mineral bank remains intact. It might break into pieces, but it is rarely vaporized into its constituent parts. The investment to create the mountain was a huge change This may sound like it contradicts the first rule Preservation of Essence. Remember I likened the rules of nature to a game. Well, the best games have competing interests. The value and excitement comes in the competition of interests. In this case the first two rules have at the surface competing interests but the outcome is much more exciting. 9 In nature, change is any deviation in an object’s or system’s normal and desired state of affairs; such as wear, pressure, damage. The ability to resist change defines an object’s or system’s durability. 10 AYRESASSOCIATES.COM | 5