Rest in Peace, lieber Bio Friedrich Schmidt-Bleek

Bio Schmidt-Bleek, Photo: (c) 2013, WRF/R. Stuermer

Berlin, 28 June 2019 It is with great sadness that the WRF Secretariat learned about the passing of prof. (Bio) Friedrich Schmidt-Bleek, our Honorary President and co-founder and inspirer of the World Resources Forum. The father of dematerialisation Friedrich Schmidt-Bleek or “Bio” for his friends, was President of the Factor 10 Institute in Carnoules (France), Vice Founding President of the Wuppertal Institute and Honorary President of the World Resources Forum in Switzerland since 2012.

Friedrich Schmidt-Bleek
Bio Schmidt-Bleek. Photo 2013, Trennt Magazin

Bio’s impressive career included functions at the German Federal Environmental Agency (UBA) in Berlin, and the OECD in Paris. From 1992-1997 he led the Wuppertal Institute together with Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker, with whom he also won the Takeda World Environment Award in 2001. By many called the father of dematerialisation Schmidt-Bleek introduced in 1994 the concept of Ecological Backpack (Ökologischer Rucksack) and developed the so-called MIPS concept (Material Input pro Service Unit).

bio friedrich-schmidt bleek
Bio Schmidt-Bleek, photo (c) 2011, B. de Leeuw

He addressed the World Resources Forum at various occasions with passionate and powerful speeches. For instance, at WRF 2011, in Davos, September 2011, he warned that “we are all prisoners of a civilisation that forces us to destroy the environment”. “We need factor 10 by 2050 or else we will have missed the boat”, he stated, adding that 6-8 tons resources per capita would be a good precautionary approach, assuming the earth has 7 billion people. Politicians, said Schmidt-Bleek, are responsible for not taking appropriate action.

Watch here his full keynote speech at World Resources Forum, 2013, Davos:



Also in Davos, September 2009, Bio spoke at the WRF 2009 Conference Banguet: