Can you build a house with repurposed PET bottles? In rural Pingtung County you can find such an entirely handmade, sustainable “low-tech” building. Its architect is a Canadian who came to Taiwan 20 years ago, married a local girl and has meanwhile become a naturalized citizen of Taiwan. Let’s meet with this ingenious builder.
What should we do with surplus food? Tossing food into the bin is wasteful, but how can it be donated to people who need or want it? German research assistant Stefan Simon is promoting foodsharing in Taiwan, not only to reduce food waste, but also for the sake of a more sustainable environment.
Have you ever tasted bread with straw mushrooms, crown daisy, bamboo shoots, or water spinach? Wang Peng-chieh, who earlier this year earned the title World Master Baker with the sculpted statue of a general from Taiwanese folk religion, wows bread lovers with authentic Taiwanese ingredients and seasonings.
At 24, Jeffery Lin returned to his hometown of Sanxia in New Taipei City to save his grandfather’s soap factory from going under. Together with a few friends, Lin established a new soap brand that generated sales worth NT$50 million in four years. Despite his commercial success and a bright future, Lin decided to call it quits and test uncharted waters. With borrowed money, he launched a community-based social enterprise.
Would you be ready to spend NT$8,000 – NT$10,000 per day immersing yourself in the everyday life of an indigenous village in Taiwan? “Never has a tourist tried to haggle over the price. Since they feel it’s worth it, they don’t think of cutting prices,” notes American travel writer and tour guide Cheryl Robbins, who takes visitors on tailor-made tours to the island’s indigenous communities.
A time lapse video clip called A Taste of Taiwan has recently created a buzz on the Internet. Behind the production is Danish photographer Henrik Matzen. The video celebrates Taiwan’s scenic beauty but is also meant as Matzen’s personal thank you to the island and its people. What made Matzen spend three months shooting this video, paying out of his own pocket?
For many Southeast Asian women who get married and settle in Taiwan, the transition can be difficult. Filipina Genevive Pajo Paliota, or simply Gen, has dedicated herself to helping those women and build bridges with Taiwanese society.
Taiwan has an enviable record of recycling plastics while Indonesia is one of the world’s biggest contributors to plastic waste in the oceans. But are the two countries really that different when it comes to fighting marine pollutants?
The passage of the Environmental Impact Analysis for the proposed Shen’ao coal-fired power plant has ignited popular concerns about air pollution. Over the past two years or more, protests against air pollution have continued unabated. On the heels of the anti-nuclear movement, opposition to air pollution has become the latest environmental battlefield and newest challenge for industry in Taiwan, and a measure by which political parties are judged at election time.
“I do care about it,” said Daniel, founder of the coastal cleanup organization RE-THINK. What has brought this American who had never heard of Taiwan before, all the way to this faraway island and become a “Taiwan Beach Boy?”