November 30, 2004


Giving is not just for Christmas

keep on giving
Beal – giving is “cathartic”

RECYCLING is part of the post-consumerism we advocate at Off-grid. But FREE CYCLING goes one better.
Freecycle founder Deron Beal calls it the worldwide gift economy.
At freecycle.org members give away things they would otherwise throw away. They also post want ads on their 1277 local web sites around the world. The (local) recipient collects – for free. The energy spent on transport is far outweighed by the energy saved in avoiding bringing one more item into a crowded world.

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Ecover – the only ethical multinational

On an industrial estate ten miles outside Antwerp, the Ecover detergent factory sticks out like a sore thumb. The other buildings are nondescript sheds with gray or beige metal roofs. Ecover’s factory is topped with a bright green lawn.

It’s not the immaculate sward beloved of suburban gardeners, more of a meadow, really. But it blends in with the surrounding fields and it is a key feature of what is still, ten years after it was built, the world’s most environmentally-friendly factory.

Its products – household cleaners and detergents — can be used in off-grid homes with no threat of pollution to groundwater or gardens when the washing water is recycled.

Truly clean soap
Truly clean soap
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