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Interviews

Henrique Pinheiro

Henrique Pinheiro

Henrique Pinheiro (aged 53), managing partner of Medal Seguros Lda., representantative of Allianz and Zurich (among others) in Portimão ECO123: How can we avoid fires in Portugal? Henrique Pinheiro: Thirty years ago there were no fires. Why? There were also forests, but they were kept clear. Why don’t we send the military to watch over the forests like in Monchique? And the firefighters need to have better access to the areas, better resources and secure funding. We need to take more care. Clear, protect the land and avoid fires. Firebreaks, tanks and dams… From the point of view of an …

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Idalia Duarte

Idália Duarte

Idália Duarte, aged 55; butcher ECO123: What can we do to avoid forest fires? Clear the forests, care for the forests as was done in the past, when the forests were kept clear. Whether it’s scrubland or old wood, it’s the best that could be done, caring for our forests, making the forests into a garden. What responsibility does eucalyptus have nowadays for the fires? It is already known that eucalyptus is very dangerous for the fires, but if people took care to clear the forests, it could be prevented. The bad thing is not that there is just eucalyptus. …

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António da Encarnação

António da Encarnação

António da Encarnação, farmer, aged 75 ECO123: What can we do to avoid forest fires in Portugal? We need young farmers. I love the place where I was born. I love it a lot. I’ve always loved it. I’ve never left it to go anywhere else. The best product that we have in Portugal is medronho. We don’t want a subsidy, we want it to be free like it was in the past. I’m 75, I started distilling when I was 13. The most miserable thing that the Portuguese have got is gathering medronho. It’s very badly paid, there’s a …

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Gerhard Zabel

Gerd Zabel

Doctor Gerd Zabel is a farmer and botanist. He is German, aged 69 and lives in Silves. He is the owner of “Quinta da Figueirinha”, an organic farm with 30 hectares of land, and olive, fig, almond and carob trees. He is experimenting with less flammable trees, as part of a project financed by the EU. The Quinta has drought-resistant agricultural and forest plants to preserve the pasture and control erosion, and fire-resistant trees, shrubs and ground cover to prevent forest fires. The choice of plants is essential, and requires a series of precautions and information about the species, varieties …

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ECO123 Tesla Testdrive

The Future Now.

There it is in front of the door, and it looks like a completely normal car. Could even be a BMW. You don’t feel the difference until you’re sitting in it. On the dashboard, I find a 17” touch screen. It’s the car’s nerve centre. Roberto explains how it works. The computer (or the NSA) controls the navigation system, the internet connection, the front and rear cameras, the built-in telephone, the media centre, energy consumption and all the other personal control functions which you have to adjust yourself before setting off. You can say that the car is a machine …

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Solar Impulse

To tell the story of SolarImpulse – the first solar aero plane project – we have to begin seven years ago in Switzerland. Here the idea was born. This summer the initiators and pilots André Borschberg and Bernard Piccard flew with it across the USA covering more than 5.600 km despite being confronted with heavy weather challenges. SolarImpulse, the first airplane ever to fly day and night on solar energy only, proved the reliability and efficiency of clean technologies and renewable energies. SolarImpulse took advantage of Switzerland’s long tradition of technological innovation, research and entrepreneurial excellence. Over the centuries this …

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Cardinal Peter Turkson

“For developing countries, what Portugal is going through is normal”

Cardinal Peter Turkson grew up in simple circumstances in Ghana. Today he is one of the most influential men in the Vatican. In an interview with ECO123 he calls on Europe’s crisis states to reduce their demands. Pope Francis criticises an “invisible tyranny of the markets” and speaks of a “new dance around the golden calf”. Isn’t that a bit exaggerated? He is my superior, how could I contradict him? (laughs) But seriously: of course the Pope is right. We’ve been living with the financial crisis since 2008, and there is no sign of it disappearing soon. Rather, one nation …

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Dr. Philipp Althöfer

Recipes out of the crisis – Part 2

ECO123 spoke to the inventor of a completely new method of producing recycled paper, the biologist Dr. Philipp Althöfer (47). He studied natural sciences at the universities of Düsseldorf, Bonn and Cologne. The topic for his diploma thesis was: Biotechnical treatment of process-water using the example of a paper factory processing scrap paper in a large city. And his 2001 doctoral thesis: Softening and re-use of biologically treated circulation water from paper manufacture. Althöfer is a lecturer at the University of Cologne, teaching the course “Biological Cleaning of Wastewater”. Just before this edition went to press, Althöfer showed ECO123 the …

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surfing the nation

Surfing The Nations

If there is one person who takes the maxim “think globally, act locally” literally, it is Tom Bauer, founder member of the NGO Surfing The Nations (STN). Based in Hawaii and founded in 1997, STN allowed Tom to combine his two passions: surfing and humanitarian work. The aim is to counteract the idea that surfing is something done by egomaniacs obsessed with personal fulfilment. But also to motivate practitioners to go out of their comfort zone and provide hope and change for local people who are in need of both of these things. But exactly how can surfing contribute to …

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Dia da Mulher Guineense

Guinean women in action

Despite the difficulties, there are many Guineans – both residents and emigrants, in which Portugal plays an important part – who are looking for ways to improve the country, trying to reverse the trend towards political, military and economic fragility. To this end, a group of Guinean women resident in Portugal decided to join forces drawing on the experience of Filomena Djassi. She is a woman with well-founded ideas, and, despite her youth, she is already taking on a leadership role. After a training course with a group of women in Lisbon, she spoke to ECO123. ECO123: Who is Filomena …

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