Wormhotel Workshop GSBC 2018
Please see English below.
Composteren in de stad is gelukkig niet moeilijk! Rowin zal je leren hoe je makkelijk je eigen #wormenhotel kunt bouwen en je alles vertellen over hoe simpel je zelf gft-afval kan verwerken tot rijke #vermicompost. Kom onze kronkelende compostwormen vergezellen en verras je huisgenoten door deze fascinerende wezens een uniek plekje thuis te geven! 


Reservatie vereist: Plaatsen moeten op voorhand geboekt worden via email:
Taal: Nederlands & Engels
Workshops en activiteiten bij het Green Love festival zijn gratis met een WeMakethe.City festivalpas, anders op donatie basis. Koop je festival pas hier:
Voor het volledige programma zie:
**Reserveer je plaats voor activiteiten na 18.00 uur per mail:
Worm Hotel Workshop at The Green Love festival, Saturday 23 June, 15.00 – 15.45.
Luckily composting in the city is not difficult! Rowin will tell you how easy it is to build your own worm hotel and will tell you how you can process your organic waste into rich worm #compost. Come meet our wriggly compost worms and surprise your housemates by giving these fascinating creatures a place in your home!


Reservation required: Places to be booked in advance by email:
Language: Dutch and English
Workshops and activities at the Green Love festival are free with a WeMakethe.City festival pass, otherwise on a donation basis. Buy your festival pass here:
For info on the full programme, see:
**Reserve your place for activities after 18.00 by email:

Compost a la Carte

De koude wintermaanden staan weer voor de deur, een tijd om gezellig samen te zijn. Tijd dus om een gezellig diner te plannen met je lief of met je familie!

Bij Restaurant As en Scandinavian Embassy kun je heerlijk eten en als je nu een diner boekt bij deze lokale voedselpioniers help je daar ook mee om de stad te verduurzamen. Beide restaurants gebruiken een wormenhotel van onze collega Le Compostier om hun GFT-afval te verwerken tot mooie wormencompost.

De compost wordt gebruikt voor voedselproductie in de stad. Als je nu een diner bekt maak je het mogelijk dat meer restaurants een wormenhotel kunnen uitproberen.

Restaurant As en Scandinavian Embassy gebruiken de beste ingrediënten van lokale producten en werken naar een circulaire bedrijfsvoering.

Ondersteun deze ambitie en boek nu nog jouw exclusieve diner via de crowdfunding op:


Suddenly November brought much colder weather and with it the challenge of heating our dome sufficiently to enable our activities to continue in the dome during winter. We wanted to find a heating solution high in energy efficiency, that could be easily fitted with the interior of the dome, and that provided multiple functions, in line with the permaculture design principles of all of the Green Living Lab facilities.

In early 2016 we built the Green Living Lab biomeiler as an experiment, with the objective of heating the floor of our dome. A biomeiler is a large heap of wood chips with water pipe laid in the middle. As the wood chips break down, the water inside the pipe is heated by the heat of the natural composting process and this warm water is then transported under the floor of the dome via a pump. Our biomeiler is much smaller than other biomeilers due to limited space on location. Although our biomeiler reached a temperature of up to 70 degrees Celsius and could heat the floor of the dome, we needed additional heat to make the dome warm enough for our guests to feel comfortable.

We now have this additional heat solution in the form of an efficient Rocket Stove from the Rocket Stove Store, with a mass heating system built around the rocket stove.


The Rocket Stove: the Wood Burning Stove with Optimum Efficiency
Laureano Boerman from Rocket Stove Store has been an pioneer of rocket stoves for home heating solutions for several years. He now imports the first professionally built, ready-to-use rocket stoves to the Netherlands, that come ready to be installed for use as stoves in private homes. A rocket stove is an efficient mass heater that uses small diameter wood fuel and works via the principle of double combustion. What’s that exactly? First of all wood is burned in a combustion chamber containing an insulated vertical chimney. As the wood burns steam is released and C02 gas is trapped in the vertical chamber. This gas is then also burned, increasing the overall heat efficiency of the rocket stove. This means almost complete combustion, using up to 35% less fuel than conventional stoves, as well as significantly reducing emissions.

For detailed info and illustrations on the workings of a Rocket Stove check out this link

Rocket Stove as a Mass Heater
Laureano brought us a beautiful Ramepa Rocket Stove that not only looks elegant, it is also odour free, giving the pleasure of having a fire in the home without emissions. He advised us to consider using the rocket stove in combination with a heat absorbing mass: a Rocket Mass Heater. Building a Rocket Mass Heater around the stove, where the stove exhaust pipes are installed in some form of heat absorbing mass, would trap heat and keep it inside the dome for longer. The mass heater would also continue to heat the dome after the fire has stopped, significantly reducing the amount of wood needed for fuel.

Laureano introduced us to Jason Learned of Nomad Farmers. Jason is a sustainable living systems expert experienced in installing rocket mass heaters worldwide. He is currently installing the new rocket stove at the beautiful KasKantine urban farm and restaurant in Amsterdam. Jason advised us on the best way to integrate the rocket stove with the dome and told us how the stove’s exhaust pipe could be laid horizontally along the interior wall of the dome, in order to extract more heat, before the smoke inside the pipe leaves the pipe via the chimney. He also advised us to think about how we could trap more heat inside the dome using a heat absorbing mass.

Creative Installation to Harness Heat
Our creative building wizard Rowin Snijder then began to develop a design to capture heat from the rocket stove pipe. We were really lucky that the talented master builder Ed Koevoet was available to install the rocket stove and did a beautiful job welding the stove exhaust pipe.

Rowin built a wooden bench around the stove exhaust pipe that transports smoke from the rocket stove, through the wall of the green slope on the outside of the dome, and into the chimney. The exhaust pipe inside the bench was encased with pebbles, as the combined surface area of these small stones provide a natural mass to transfer and store heat from the exhaust pipe. Rowin’s bench fits perfectly with the interior of the dome and provides a comfortable warm place for guests to sit and enjoy extra warmth while attending activities inside the dome.

Tips for Optimum Use
Laureano advised us on the correct way to make the fire inside the rocket stove, to ensure it heats up in the optimum way. It is important to make a vertical fire in the chamber with small, dry pieces of wood. To heat up quickly and evenly the small pieces of wood should be of a similar size. Instead of having to chop wood outside the dome with an axe in the cold weather Laureano came up with a solution, the Kindling Cracker. This handy device was invented by New Zealander Ayla Hutchinson for a school science project at the age of 13! It enables everyone, including kids, to break larger pieces of wood into the ideal size needed to fuel the rocket stove with minimum effort. Laureano is just beginning to import the Kindling Cracker to the Netherlands and they are now available to pre-order at the Rocket Stove Store.

The Heat Proof
Rocket Mass Heaters provide a highly efficient, clean and cheap heating solutions for homes. As the heat is absorbed into the mass (small pebbles in our case), as much heat from the exhaust pipe is extracted and captured as possible before it leaves the dome.

Another big advantage of using a mass heater is the type of heat emitted via conduction and radiation feels more pleasant than the convection heat of standard heating systems. The air inside the space is not dried out with a Rocket Mass Heater and the heat feels more natural and comfortable.

Laureano tested the temperature on several occasions with a digital laser thermometer, to ensure all was working in an optimum way. So far the temperature on top of the rocket stove has been recorded at over 350 degrees Celsius. At the point where the exhaust pipe exits the dome, the temperature of the pipe inside the bench is around 40 degrees Celsius. This tells us that most of the heat is successfully staying inside the dome. About 1 inch of pebbles heat up every hour, so the whole bench is warm to sit on by the end of a day’s use.

Just 1 hour after lighting the rocket stove the entire space inside the dome is heated nicely and the pebbles at the end of the bench closest to the rocket stove start to feel warm. We can heat a large kettle of water to make tea, make soup or pancakes on top of the rocket stove. Our guests can enjoy the heat anywhere inside the dome and also gather around the stove itself to enjoy the feeling of being close to around a fire and get a nice view of the flames.

The perfect recipe for cosiness!

So a big warm thank you to Laureano, Ann-Kee, Ed, Antony and Rowin for creating such a perfect solution for heating the dome and for making it possible for us to stay warm inside!

For information on rocket stoves and to contact Laureano for advice on models and installation, please see:

Please mention that you heard about rocket stoves via the Green Living Lab!

We loved hosting Gemeente Velsen’s Urban Development team at the Green Living Lab for a team building day!

Not knowing what to expect on arrival at this little piece of green in the middle of the Zuidas, the team from Velsen soon made themselves at home in the dome, rolled up their sleeves & got started with activities led by the Green Living Lab team.

First, Green Living Lab project manager Aveen Colgan led the group in making colourful pots of zuurkool using produce from the GLL garden. Our co-ordinator Roos van der Deijl then led the group on a tour of the GLL, explaining the story behind our project & the multiple functions of each element of our facilities. Afterwards the group were introduced to their new worm pets by Rowin Snijder from the GLL team, who designs & builds beautiful worm hotels as Le Compostier, which make community composting in the city possible. Rowin explained that vermicomposting with worm hotels provide a solution for turning organic urban waste into valuable compost in a fast, odourless & fun way. The group then made their own worm hotels to bring home & start composting.

The afternoon was brought to a close with drinks & vegetarian snacks in the dome, served by GLL facilities co-ordinator Lea Grosse (who is also a whizz in the kitchen!) It was a joy to see all of the Gemeente Velsen team having fun being creative & working together!

The Green Living Lab offers diverse seasonal workshops that involve working together & are always lots of fun! We also design our team building experiences according to the specific interests of the group.

If you would like to organise a team building day with your colleagues at the Green Living Lab in 2017 we’d love to hear from you here:


A BIG thank you to all who took part in the Green Living Lab’s Circular Economy Hackathon, where circular economy ideas, kind to people and planet, were hatched by enthusiastic hackers in the dome!

Enactus VU hosted the event as part of our Community Compost School programme. Enactus president Hanneke van Setten told us how positive social impact & sustainability are central values for their enterprises. We heard about the new Enactus compost collection enterprise, incubated by the Green Living Lab, where students will work together to create value from organic waste in the city. Viewing waste as a resource for value creation is central to circular economy thinking.

We heard from Rowin Snijder about StadsOogst, a circular economy co-operative that he recently set up with partner Chris Mueller, The StadsOogst (City Harvest) team make potting soil from compost made in the city & from waste materials from urban food production. The resulting potting soil will be used to grow food in the city, for the city.

Luana Carretto, founder of Taste Before You Waste, shared her motivations & experience of setting up a circular economy initiative that is focused on preventing urban food waste. By creating & serving healthy, delicious vegan food from food waste, TBYW shows us how a healthy diet, a healthy local food system & a healthy local economy are connected. Taste Before You Waste is now to be found in other cities & towns & offers educational food waste workshops to inform children & their parents how to prevent food waste. Taste Before You Waste are looking for more food waste heroes to help them with their mission to prevent food waste in the city, so if you’d like to help out just get in touch!

Knowledge & Innovation Manager, Shyaam Ramkumar from Circle Economy explained what circular economy means & the importance of systems thinking in designing sustainable products & business models. Shyaam’s examples of innovative local & international circular products & business models really inspired guests – thank you Shyaam!

Then it was on to the Hackathon Challenge! Enactus VU challenged guests to work in teams to think of a circular economy idea that could be applied locally & then to pitch it to our jury. After 4 passionate pitches the judges chose the winning idea, ‘The Magic Lightbulb’, a repair service focused on connecting younger & older generations. The winning team received a Dopper water bottle each, donated by Green Office VU.

We have 2 workshops left on our Community Compost School programme – 25 November & 9th December & everyone is welcome to join us. For info & to reserve your place please get in touch at

#circulareconomyhackathon #circulareconomy #circulaireconomy #rethinkbusinessmodel #systemsthinking #biomimicry #wasteisaresource #greenlivinglab #circleeconomy #enactusvu #stadsoogst #tastebeforeyouwaste

With our education programme, The Community Compost School, we aim to inspire students, city residents & local businesses to think about how they too can convert their organic waste into value by composting.

On the 1st week of the Community Compost School programme we heard from Rowin Snijder of  Le Compostier on how important healthy living soil is for all life on earth.

We heard how healthy plant life & a healthy environment begin with a healthy soil & how important it is for us to look after our local soil, including the soil in the city.

Rowin told us about the growing phenomenon of Community Composting in Amsterdam, where city residents group together to place ‘worm hotels’ in their neighbourhoods or community gardens in order to convert their organic kitchen waste into compost. This compost can then be used to grow food locally. By turning waste into a useful, valuable product, the residents are not only adding value to their local soil & local economy, they are also preventing organic waste from being sent to landfill which can cause environmental pollution. By viewing organic waste as a resource for our urban food system, these circular economy pioneers are inspiring more community composting projects across the city.

Rowin informed us how vermicomposting, composting with worms, offers a fast, odourless & easy solution for composting in the city & he showed us how worm hotels work in practice. Course participants also got to make their own bucket worm hotels to bring home so they can start turning their kitchen waste into value.

We are looking forward to hearing how they get on living with their new worm housemates!

Het is bijna tijd om onze 2de onderwijsprogramma ‘De Buurtcompost School te lanceren op vrijdag 30 september!

Dus de perfecte tijd voor een terugblik op onze 1ste onderwijs programma, ‘The Green Student Bootcamp Challenge’.

Hier vinden jullie een mooi verslag over de invloed van het programma door deelnemende student Roos van der Deijl, MSc Neuroscience, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU).

“Vrijdag, begin van de middag. ‘Ga je weer naar je groene ding?’ ‘Jep, weer lekker in de aarde wroeten!’ roep ik voordat ik huppelend de Boelelaan oversteek en het Groene Leven Lab binnenloop. Daar vind ik mijn mede ‘groene gezonde studenten’ al (ja hip hè, je vind ons op sociale media onder #greenhealthystudents), kletsend rondom de groentedips, gevulde dadels, en andere (groene, gezonde, vanzelfsprekend) snacks die programmaleidster Aveen met een aantal (groene, gezonde) helpers heeft gemaakt.

Zo ongeveer begon de afgelopen lente iedere vrijdagmiddag voor mij en vijfendertig medestudenten. Vervolgens wachtte ons iedere week weer een vol programma waarin zowel onze handen als breinen werden uitgedaagd om wat duurzamer met de aarde om te gaan. Want naast het vergaren van kennis en inspiratie over de hele reeks onderwerpen die hiermee te maken hebben, was de Green Student Bootcamp Challenge vooral een ‘action lab’, waarmee het creatief, productief, en efficiënt in de praktijk brengen van ideeën voorop stond.

Ik zou pagina’s kunnen vullen over de bomvolle lijst aan workshops, sprekers, en uitdagingen die we iedere week kregen, maar voor de leesbaarheid van dit stukje zal ik het bij de hoogtepunten houden. Praktische stadstuinieren workshops door Cityplot werden afgewisseld met o.a. zonnige en erg inspirerende lessen van VU professor Jaap Seidell, en dr. Jolanda Maas, die i.s.m. het Groene Leven Lab onderzoek doen naar de effecten van een groene omgeving op gezondheid. Ook de VU Green Office en sociaal ondernemen platform Enactus VU kwamen met ons brainstormen. Daarnaast werden we geïnspireerd door verhalen uit het bedrijfsleven van o.a. Coco-Mat, Bio-Kultura, en NICE fruitijsjes (inclusief gratis ijsjes die erg welkom waren op die warme middag!). Goede herinneringen hebben we ten slotte aan de kookdemo van Vegan Sundays, en Tai Chi en mindfulness lessen in het ‘blotevoetenveld’.

Als ik van dit alles één ‘take home message’ zou moeten noemen, is het wel het belang van onze bodem. Ik vind het ongelooflijk me te beseffen dat ontelbare diersoorten onder onze voeten een complex ecosysteem vormen dat letterlijk en figuurlijk ten grondslag ligt aan al het leven op aarde. Wist je bijvoorbeeld dat één eetlepel aan bodem meer micro-organismes bevat dan de volledige bevolking ter aarde? Daarom is het zo jammer dat we er niet zo goed voor zorgen; de afgelopen 150 jaar is de helft van de bodem toplaag verloren gegaan door menselijke ingrepen zoals ontbossing, overbegrazing, en het gebruik van landbouwchemicaliën.

Confronterend? Ja. Hopeloos? Nee. Met een beetje creativiteit is overal een oplossing voor te bedenken, leren we van de lessen maar ook van elkaar. Neem Rowin uit het GLL team, ook wel ‘Le Compostier’. Hij maakt ‘wormenhotels’: zelfontworpen compostbakken, voor straten en restaurants in de stad. Of kijk naar Juste, hij wordt héél blij van gezond koken en is een levend voorbeeld van hoeveel energie dat kan geven. Of Waas, die ons verteld over zijn project ‘Tiny Tim’, een minihuis dat zichzelf voorziet van water, warmte, en elektriciteit.

De tijd vloog om, en voor we het wisten waren we onze graduation party aan het organiseren. Op dit groene festival evalueerden we op de ervaring en vierden we onder het genot van zelfgemaakte hapjes uit de tuin het behalen van onze groene studentenstatus. Onze ‘graduation gift’ was niets minder dan bodem uit de tuin. En zo, beginnend en eindigend met bodem, was de cirkel rond.

Aan het eind van de middag fietste ik altijd naar huis met mijn hoofd vol ideeën om mijn eigen leven weer een beetje groener, bewuster, gezonder, en vooral leuker te maken. Mijn vrienden, familie, en huisgenoten lachten me toe (of soms een beetje uit) over mijn nieuwgevonden enthousiasme voor het houden van wormen, het ‘opvoeden’ van mijn baby plantenbaby’s, en het ijverig schudden van mijn kiempotten. Maar ik denk dat we stiekem best wat zaadjes hebben geplant. Nu maar hopen dat ze blijven groeien.”

Er is nog tijd om deel te nemen aan De Buurtcompost School programma!

Stuur een e-mail naar: voor informatie.