In this lyrical exploration, John Todd shares the essential principles of ecological design and reveals how mimicking nature’s forms and processes can lead to breakthrough design. He reveals the design secrets behind his award-winning eco-industrial park in Burlington, Vermont, and his strategies to clean up bodies of water from the marshes around Lake Champlain to the canals of Venice and South China. The main allies in his natural sewage treatment systems are native plants that help grow and feed bacteria, break down carcinogens, and sequester metals to produce clean water. His job is not to find a simple solution, but to evolve a technological and social framework that functions like a symphonic movement. This talk was given at the 2002 Bioneers National Conference and is part of the Ecological Design Collection, Vol. 1. Since 1990, Bioneers has acted as a fertile hub of social and scientific innovators with practical and visionary solutions for the world's most pressing environmental and social challenges. To experience talks like this, please join us at the Bioneers National Conference each October, and regional Bioneers Resilient Community Network gatherings held nationwide throughout the year. For more information on Bioneers, please visit and stay in touch via Facebook and Twitter .