Polish Minister of Health officially denied that smog poses a risk to health despite solid evidence saying otherwise. Konstanty Radziwill claimed that protecting members of public from air pollution is not a health priority and can virtually be ignored, as there are more pressing health issues.
Meanwhile, it is estimated that over 45,000 Poles die from air pollution each year – second highest number (per 1000 citizens) in Europe (after Bulgaria)
Scientists from the University of Cambridge, led by Dutch social psychologist Dr Sander van der Linden, are developing a method to ‘vaccinate’ news readers against misinformation.
Their research, using climate change denial as an example, shows that it works well to briefly mention that there is criticism against the consensus on the subject, but provide an easy-to-refute example of this. When someone will later come across similar criticism in a fake news story, they will be prone to reject it. However, if conspiracy theories are given too much attention, and treated with a more detailed debunk, this has an adverse effect on the readers, who will more likely believe the next hoax article that they are presented with.
The key is finding the right dosage that helps people protect themselves against nonsense.
More information in English – Meer informatie in het Nederlands
Skepsis ry from Finland is organizing a debate titled: What Role Should Nuclear Power Have in Mitigating Climate Change? Should The World Build More Nuclear Power or Not?
Speakers of the debate are Rauli Partanen, an independent science writer and energy-analyst for the Ecomodernist Society of Finland and professor Jouko Korppi-Tommola, the founder and director of the centre for renewable energy at the University of Jyväskylä.
The debate will be held at the House of Sciences in Helsinki, first wednesday of December (7.12.2016) at 18:00. Entry is free, and everyone is welcome.