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Interviews

Living off its passengers.

Miguel Fragoso (mechanical engineer) began his career in the maintenance and mechanical department in 1987 at Rodoviária Nacional (RN (National Coaches)) servicing the Algarve fleet of what was then RN. In 1989, he took over another company in the Barraqueiro group. Today, the group is made up of four companies and including EVA and Frota Azul Algarve. ECO123: How did you get to work today? Miguel Fragoso: By car because I live in Vilamoura and my role in the company forces me to travel around and that means I cannot avoid giving up on a personal vehicle due its availability …

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Sharing Creativity

Creative Commons is a non-profit organisation that frequently gets described as in the vanguard of the copyleft (1) movement that seeks to build a rich public domain as an alternative to the traditional copyright with its “all rights reserved”. To learn more about the organisation, its objectives and actions in Portugal, ECO123 talked with Teresa Nobre.   ECO123: What exactly is Creative Commons and what is its positioning in Portugal? Creative Commons (CC) is a non-profit organisation that provides free of charge licenses for the utilisation of works and materials protected by author royalty and other rights as well as …

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The first organic Algarve wine

On the outskirts of Lagos, in Sargaçal, Guillaume Leroux, aged 49, Luso-French – or Franco-Algarve -, has been producing Algarve’s first organic wine since 2012. ECO123 set off to meet him on Monte da Casteleja, the 6.5 hectare estate he inherited from his mother’s side of the family, to find out just what is and how you produce organic wine. Guillaume Leroux (GL) – Aged 18, following the death of my father, I returned to France and began to study agriculture, which had always been my interest. I began with landscaping and parks before moving onto general agriculture and cattle …

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Feltro - Maria Custódio

Felt: always in fashion

Felt is a 100% natural material made through compacting woollen threads through a rolling method. Whether done manually or industrially, the technique requires the utilisation of rolls to press and aggregate the fibres, forming a cloth without ever really requiring any weaving. This is a truly ancestral form of producing clothing and fashion accessories with the earliest felt remains ever discovered dating back to 600 BC and found in Altai (Mongolia). To better understand the processes involved, its economic and ecological viability, ECO123 spoke to Maria Custódio, an artist and artisan who turns felt into her form of expression. Based …

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Opening the way through innovation

António Ferreira is the entrepreneur responsible for Pedralva Village tourism project. Following a dozen years working in publicity and strategic planning, and somewhat “fed up with the uninteresting world and selling things that were just not necessary”, he decided to take a new path in life. Already aware of the region and its tourism potential, in visiting Pedralva Village, he discovered the opportunity he had been searching for. He set up a company with four friends and advanced with the project. And, as he said, “here we still are”. ECO123: What added value did the Pedralva Village restoration generate? António …

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zona velha funchal

Planning real actions

Gil da Silva Canha sits on Funchal Municipal Council and the councillor responsible for urbanism, directly supervising this and other projects. ECO123: How would you evaluate the restoration project for the Santa Maria historical centre? Gil da Silva Canha: I believe it grew weaker as the recovery of a historical neighbourhoods requires a general plan of action and thus far no such plan has ever been drafted. What was done involved sporadic and individual interventions.

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Fabrik der Alternativen

Teaching wanting to do

João Pestana is an aeronautical communications specialist. After twenty years of working in the Azores, he returned to Lisbon in 2011 and getting involved in various political movements and citizen protest movements. He self-describes himself as somebody “who just cannot stay stopped” and a firm believer in the need for social change. He was one of the drivers behind the Algés Popular Assembly (1) and participates in the community management of one of its projects – the Factory for Alternatives. ECO123: How did an initiative like the Factory for Alternatives actually emerge? João Pestana: It emerged out of the Algés Popular …

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logo_afpop

A valuable interconnection between expatriates and Portuguese society

In the 1970s and 1980s, the number of international citizens buying houses or plots for construction in Portugal, with a particular incidence in the Algarve, was at a high level. And they experienced full on the locally prevailing lack of respect for bureaucratic rules and varying from council to council. To make matters worse, many international citizens did not live here full-time and did not keep up to date with the continuous changes ongoing to the legislation. In 1987, AFPOP – the Association of Foreign Property Owners in Portugal was founded and serving as a type of mutual help centre, …

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Entrevista Pedro Viterbo

Studying the globe, influencing the community

At the IPMA – the Portuguese Institute for the Sea and Atmosphere (1), ECO123 talked with Dr. Pedro Viterbo, a member of the IPCC – the International Panel on Climate Change (2) in order to find out more details on the IPCC’s report and its conclusions. We also questioned him about the role of the IPCC in government decisions and sought to learn more about the actions necessary to fostering sustainability in the economy and its ecology without mortgaging the future of generations to come. ECO123: What is the IPCC?   Pedro Viterbo: The IPCC is a panel set up …

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Schumache von Monchique

Rediscovering the past of a profession with a future.

The Cobbler Shoes of one sort or another are as old as the need to protect our feet from the climate and the surrounding territory. From this need emerged the profession of the cobbler. The estimated date for a shoe found in Armenia in 2008 by a group of scientists from the University of Cork (Ireland) come in at around 5500 BC. Despite the art of shoemaking commonly being attributed to ancient Egypt, there is evidence from Palaeolithic paintings found in caves in the south of France that their history actually stretches back to 10000 BC. According to “legend”, in …

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