Sunday 2 August 2009

Roots of the Dutch climate denialists, part 3 : stichting kernvisie

The Stichting Kernvisie (or Foundation Nuclear Energy) was found in 2000 and the president is emeritus Rob Kouffeld, who was working on Energy Technology in the Technical University Delft.

In its newsletter, the Stichting Kernvisie's main focus of course seems to be promoting nuclear energy and it considers Nuclear Power to be one of the answers to the climate change problem.

Even though the reasoning is completely logical, there's something odd going on : De Groene Rekenkamer (DGR) is an organisation of climate skeptics claiming there's basically no man-made climate problem, while Stichting Kernvisie uses this same climate-subject as one of the reasons to be pro nuclear power. Apparantly Stichting Klimaat is satisfied by one side of DGR's story, being their applause for nuclear power.

But there's more going on, as is shown beneath the widget

Rob Kouffeld
On top of the apparant contradiction above, when having a closer look one sees Stichting Kernvisie's president Rob Kouffeld (who is member of the advisory board of DGR) is one of the people signing a letter published in the Dutch newspaper Volkskrant saying man is not altering climate.

So while the Stichting Kernvisie's publications may be accepting manmade climate change, Kouffeld himself clearly does not. How he manages to rhyme those two opinions is something i cannot explain, it looks like the man is playing double game.

As can be seen often in an enviro-skeptical environment, what matters is not the arguments used (they can be excluding each other, it doesn't matter), but what matters is the conclusion. In Kouffeld's case : the promotion of Nuclear Power. And both Stichting Kernvisie and DGR do so.

The S. Fred Singer letter
The letter mentioned above, which has spread widely over the internet, is extremely important as it reads as a "who's who" in Holland. Yet the truly amazing thing with this letter is the appearance of a name of a person without direct connections to Holland. That man is S. Fred Singer, the man who built a career as a lobbyist for anyone who needed an anti-environmentalist viewpoint.

It's the first yet not the last time we'll see Singers name appear in the history of Dutch climate skepticism, as it seems to be S. Fred Singer who seems to have been their most important international contact, and this from the very beginning of the Dutch anti-environmentalism.

Sending letters signed by a bunch of (supposed) experts, as we see here, actually is a tactic which the international climate change denialists have used over and over again. Looks like Singer has been a good teacher to Hans Labohm, the author of the letter. Obviously, there's also a clear connection between the names on that letter and De Groene Rekenkamer, as we will see later on.

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