Climate scepticism often isn’t a result of scientific scientific objections, but merely a result of some sort of paranoid vision towards the government and/or science. The best known example are the libertarian think thanks who are both very vocal, but very unscientific and blinded by their political view.
What you don’t meet often is the blogosphere are sceptics who have a total different paranoid bias,a clear example is the Belgian Belfort Group lead by Peter Vereecke, the former CD&BV Mayor of the village of Evergem. The group’s primary fear is not climate change at all, but the chemtrail conspiracy theory, a theory saying airplanes are deliberately spraying us with chemicals, hidden in their condensation trail. Of course this conspiracy is complete nonsense, but you’d be surprised how internet sites of believers there are.
Other issues often dealt with on such sites are the New World Order, forced vaccinations (p.ex. when you’re sleeping) and of course it’s no surprise those people think global warming is a hoax too, because it’s all about communist illuminati wanting to gain complete control over the world.
o please Vereecke, current CD&V minister Joke Schauvliege, while still being a MP in September 2008 did ask a parliamentary question about chemtrails. The reply of Minister Hilde Crevits was of course predictable, and contained the phrase : “The specialists in my administration do not believe in the danger and existance of chemtrails. Through Google you can surf from one site to another with all kinds of theories that are non-scientific. Every time the same words are being used and one site has even more spectacular explanations than the previous one“
Nevertheless, in November 2009, having become the Minister of environment, Schauvliege did meet the Belfort Group in her cabinet, promising to use the Flemish environmental measuring network to look for pollution of heavy metal on places where there are no industrial activities. Maybe Schauvliege, a lawyer, should listen more to the environmental administration and less to conspiricists ?
Meanwhile, the Belfort group started to be interested in global warming after Eric Cornand, an alternative medicine, joined the group. January 31, Peter Vereecke sent around a press release (in Dutch) titled ‘Global Warming ? Sure, and earth is flat’ containing a lot of low brow nonsense :
- CO2 is pictured as a poisonous gas, while it’s vital for life
- CO2 is merely 0,0385 % of the atmosphere and 90% of that content is natural
And clearly Vereecke isn’t aware that you have to look at the wavelenghts of IR-absorbance for the specific gasses.
- So the big climate conferences (Kyoto, Copenhagen, Cancun) are talking about decreasing 10% of 10% of 0.00385 % in a 10 year period.
- All ice-cores show a CO2 lag.
- IPCC isn’t THE world authority on climate change, their reports are nothing but an supposition by a limited group of scientist who wrote a study ordered by politics.
- The Al Gore movie contains errors and a British judge forbid airing it in schools
- Climategate : in the East Anglia institute (the most important provider of IPCC data) thousands of emails emerged showing during ten years (!) there was a fraud with data, numbers and statistics
- And finally : do take notice of the real temperatures. for the moment the entire world (especially the northern hemisphere) is showing abnormal low temperatures. How does this rhyme with global warming.
Of course Vereecke ends his piece with what really drives him : his conspiracy ideas. Summarized :
- Chemtrails are a tool for geo-engineering and controlling earth’s climate. The Nagoya Moratorium proves it is happening.
- HAARP is not a conspiracy theory because it exists ! ELF-waves are used to influence weather
- The BP oil-spill caused the gulfstream to slow down.
The website Poppenkast (entirely in Dutch) has much more to say about the Belfort Group. According to Poppenkast, the Belfort Group has around 1500 members, which may not sound as a lot, but the Flemish region only has around 6 million people, so actually it is a significant number. There are lot of people around who could use a little more critical thinking.
The Belfort Group of course has good contacts with other conspiracists in the low countries, like We are Change Belgium, We Are Change Holland, Argusoog, … The worrying part is the Belfort Group seems to radicalize, and often is in contact with groups flirting with anti-Semitic ideas.