Friday, July 1, 2022
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Nº 128 – Cooperation instead of Competition.

Saturday 25th June 2022. Nothing is just simply black and white or a linear affair running in straight lines. Nearly every action, every product creates waste or CO2 at some stage in its life, or indeed winners and losers: the rich are becoming richer, the poor are becoming poorer. Biodiversity across all habitats on our planet is decreasing, and this is something we are keeping an eye on at every step of our journalistic work. Which is exactly why at ECO123 we operate differently, from the bottom up and with an awareness of the circular nature of our economy. When …

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Nº 127 – 18 years later…

Saturday the 11th june 2022. Eighteen years ago, when we planted saplings in various beds and across different mountainous terraces of our plot of land, we weren’t yet familiar with the concept of the Miyawaki Forest, named after the Japanese botanist and plant ecologist Professor Akira Miyawaki (1928-2021, https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akira_Miyawaki). In 2004, when we received a donation of 5,000 different species of trees after the forest fire here in Monchique (11 September 2003) we were looking for a temporary space to keep these 15-cm saplings. I’m talking about oaks, alder, ash, linden, beech and carob trees, as well as umbrella pines …

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Nº 126 – The right book at the right time.

Saturday 30th April 2022. The news that are missing from the media The „forgotten news“ of 2022 This year, the ranking of what has become known as the „Forgotten News“ is dominated by an environmental issue. The extinction of the butterflies A third of all butterfly species have already disappeared from our planet. The reasons for this are the lack of habitat and food plants, the use of pesticides in agriculture and finally climate change. However, butterflies have – similar to bees and other insects – an elementary role within the ecosystem: they contribute to the pollination of plants, creating …

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Vacancies with ECO123

ECO123 is looking for someone to take up a leading position in its Advertising/Subscriptions team. ECO123’s advertising and subscriptions team is tasked with maintaining the cooperative budget and journalistic independence of ECO123 by selling advertising and subscriptions for ECO123’s digital and printed versions. ECO123 is actively engaged in pursuing digital transformation and following the path towards CO2 neutrality. Our cooperative and editorial team are preparing for the point in time when ECO123 will be published on a weekly basis, exclusively in a digital format, with a printed edition “Yearbook – The Best of ECO123” being published once a year in …

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Nº 124 – Edible wild plants in Eco-gardens

Saturday 09.04.2022. Lisbon. It‘s a bright sunny Sunday morning in early April. A tiled azulejo panel in the parking lot of the Praia da Aguda in Sintra-Cascais Natural Park describes the beauty of this beach in verse. Down below the sea is throwing magnificently regular waves; seen from the cliffs the surfers appear tiny. Not easily overlooked with her flaming ginger hair is Filomena Aivado. Today Filomena and João Santos, founders of the Lisbon-based initiative “Hortas Ecológicas” are taking us on a stroll around the world of edible wild plants. This is part of a regular programme presenting indigenous plants …

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What forest is this?

Like sap, we rise up through the four layers of a forest. We progress from the bureaucrats in state institutions to experts who are passionate about the forest. Let’s move from the Dantesque vision of the current ‘eucalyptugal’ to the landscape of the lush forest that is to come.   The ground layer It’s called Quinta da Fonteireira, in Belas, and it is a rare green lung in the suburbs along the Sintra railway line. Between the ages of eight and eighteen, I slept more than a hundred nights there, in Vale Escuro. At that time, when I was in …

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Do it yourself and avoid waste

Homemade Shampoo Today we are going to talk about shampoo: a vegan alternative, without chemicals or plastics. I can’t imagine how many plastic shampoo bottles I’ve thrown away over the course of my life. Whether the bottle is 250 ml or 1000 ml, the flood of plastic never seems to end. Special soap for hair washing does exist, but it’s not always easy to find – and goodness knows where it’s been imported from, or rather, how much CO2 it has generated, even without counting my journey to buy it at the shop… plus, the never-ending list of ingredients makes …

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ZERO WASTE

Do it yourself Does nature have the best deals around? It may seem incredible, but it’s true. Making your own laundry detergent — from plants, or other ingredients freely available in the natural world — is simple. At times, I have the impression that cleaning products are produced for people living in cities; places bereft of nature, with inhabitants who are no longer aware of what the natural world gives us for free. We aren’t taught how to make these sorts of products at school, in science classes or otherwise. And why not? Perhaps because plants can’t grow on concrete, …

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DAY 6
Salir – Cortelha – Barranco do Velho

DAY 6
Salir – Cortelha – Barranco do Velho

Right, the first one hundred kilometres are behind me. It’s turning out to be easier than I’d envisaged; after all, I’m hiking without previous training. The advantage compensating this lack of training is that I know the trail well and that I’m walking slowly, building up my physical form. The entire stretch of the Via Algarviana runs to around 300 kilometres. You have the first, the eastern part, from Alcoutim to Barranco do Velho, the central section from Barranco do Velho to Monchique and the westerly part from Monchique to the southwestern cape. I pack my backpack, take my hiking …

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DAY 5
From Alte to Salir. Moorish Fountains.

DAY 5
From Alte to Salir. Moorish Fountains.

19 km. I’ve now arrived in the heart of the Algarve. To be journeying on foot also means to gain direct contact with the people and their environment. And isn’t that what we journalists need and want to know? What makes the people of this country tick? What are they thinking, and: how are they? In Alte, right at the beginning of the fifth day of my hike I meet an elderly lady collecting a little brushwood at the empty and dried-out Ribeira de Alte, a brook which used to be home to fish and many other wildlife, a biotope …

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