Climate change will no longer take us unawares

‘When I’m older, I’m going to buy a houseboat with 10 floors where the whole family can live. And where we can have guests. We’ll keep our supplies in the cellar. On the roof we’ll have a vegetable garden, solar panels and a place to sit and relax. From there, we’ll be able to see […]

Are slow travel holidays gaining traction?

Are slow travel holidays gaining traction? As a teenager and student I liked to travel by train. I found it adventurous and romantic, whether it was the night train to a skiing holiday or an interrail pass criss-crossing Europe. Later, I started taking the plane more often, mainly for practical reasons. It made the world […]

Joining the coffee revolution

Joining the coffee revolution I’ve been dreaming about a good espresso machine for a while. A machine for which you grind freshly roasted beans yourself to make a caffè like a real barista, and which would win the approval of regular customers in an Italian bar. Quite apart from the exquisite coffee taste, I would […]

Tiles out, come on with the green!

Tiles out, come on with the green! In the Belgian town of Lier, 30 families were ordered to take the paving out of their front gardens at short notice. Bricks, pebbles and tiles had to be removed and replaced by green – a very sensible measure as far as I’m concerned, one that wouldn’t do […]

There’s a sustainable alternative for everything you need

There’s a sustainable alternative for everything you need What is the mission of your platform? This question was asked by the owner of a sustainable business in an introductory meeting to explore the possibility of partnering. My answer was that we seek to inspire people in an accessible and positive way to make sustainable choices […]

Setbacks, perseverance and success in the end

Setbacks, perseverance and success in the end A long time ago, I fell in love with a house on the River Amstel. It was an old, detached house with a big veranda, green and white window frames, a cluttered garden and tall trees. In the city of Amsterdam, but in a green and leafy area. […]

Paper made from stone and wood in a lab

Paper made from stone and wood in a lab I have a huge map of the world in my house. I often stand in front of it – to dream about all the countries I still want to visit, to show my children where a country is, or to let a piece of news sink […]

A second life for fruit and vegetable waste

A second life for fruit and vegetable waste “Shall we throw it away now, or put it in the fridge until it comes out by itself?” we used to joke when we had leftovers in our student days. It happened just a little too often that we would find bowls with mouldy sauces or wilted […]

Is second-hand going to be the new normal?

Is second-hand going to be the new normal? Households have an average of 20,000 personal belongings – many of which are never used. Every time I walk around the house, I see opportunities to bring this average down. I (almost) only buy things I really need, and yet I still see items that are mouldering […]

How cows are making way for soybeans, wine and fruit trees

How cows are making way for soybeans, wine and fruit trees I grew up by a river, amid meadows, a few houses and scattered farms. In the summer, I’d camp with friends on a farmer’s land. He had 50 cows and 30 horses. I learned to cook on a gas burner and to light fires. […]