Wednesday 30 April 2014

The action ship Rainbow Worrier from Greenpeace sailed towards the Russian oil tanker Mikhail Ulyanov to protest against the first delivery of north pole  oil in the harbour of Rotterdam. The oil tanker is expected to arrive in the morning of May the 4th. The Rainbow Worrier and the oil tanker have probably already met. Greenpeace already stated they will not try to board the tanker.

Tuesday 29 April 2014
Dutch have to keep silent about early outcome European elections

Since the Dutch already organise the European elections on Thursday 22 of May, they already know the results before the rest of  Europe vote on Sunday May 25. At the last European elections the Dutch already published the preliminary results prematurely. The European Commission was not amused and prohibited this. There still seems to be ways to find out though.

Saturday 26 April 2014

On Friday 25 April the port authorities of Antwerp, Mannheim, Rotterdam, Strasbourg and Switzerland signed a joint venture for the introduction of LNG. This involves cooperation in research, promotion, knowledge transfer, legislation and bunker infrastructure. The agreements follow on from the LNG Master plan of the Rhine-Main-Danube corridor in which all participants are involved. The aim of this master plan is to put liquefied natural gas to full scale use as a fuel for inland shipping on the Rhine-Main-Danube corridor.

Friday 25 April 2014
Dutch Lower House passes care reform legislation despite protests branch

Yesterday the Dutch Lower House has taken on the new legislation to reform and decentralise some of the care. The idea is to bring care closer to the people by handing over the responsibility and organisation to the municipalities. This decision was made despite the protests of the unions, the health insurers and a long list of well-known Dutch people. To them the reforms are implemented much too fast, which will lead to serious problems in 2015. They requested a postponement of one year.

Wednesday 23 April 2014

The PVV has asked the independent research bureau de Hond to conducted an opinion poll into the view of the Dutch regarding the presence of Moroccans in the Netherlands. One of the results of the poll is that 43% of all the Dutch prefer to have fewer Moroccans. Some Dutch party leaders reacted half-hearted. They doubt the quality of the poll, miss nuance, do not believe so many Dutch citizens want to put aside a complete section of the population or refuse to comment on opinion polls anyway.

Tuesday 22 April 2014

The Netherlands is pleased to announce that this Global Oceans Action Summit for Food Security and Blue Growth will now take place in The Hague, The Netherlands from 22 to 25 April, 2014 at the World Forum conference centre. The High-level gathering is organised in close collaboration with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the World Bank and the Governments of Grenada, Indonesia, Mauritius, Norway, and the United States of America. The goal of the summit is to focus on identifying solutions for healthy oceans. Urgent coordinated action is needed.

Tuesday 22 April 2014
An egg against blindness, unique Dutch research

For seven years a Dutch chicken farmer and the University of Maastricht have been developing a special egg that fights elderly blindness. In the Netherlands around 100.000 elderly, and worldwide 100 million, suffer from the age-related macular degeneration blindness. The shortage of certain nutrients, among which lutein, is one of the causes of the obstinate eye disease. The special new medical eggs contains a high concentration of the needed nutrients to fight elderly blindness.

Monday 21 April 2014
Dutch life ending clinic not careful enough practising euthanasia

According to the regional Euthanasia checking commission the Dutch life ending clinic did not act careful enough practising euthanasia on a seriously depressed elderly  woman. The doctors should have taken much more time to discuss the plan with the patient, also without the children being present. Before complying with the euthanasia request, the doctor and team should also have asked for a judgement from a psychiatrist. The euthanasia was executed in September 2013.

Sunday 20 April 2014
The self-evolving 3D printer robot will need a kill switch

A professor at a Dutch university is creating an independent robot system with a 3D printer that should develop themselves totally independently. The result should be that the robots should evolve into a new, stronger generation. It will be the real independent evolution of robots in the real world, something that has never been done before.

Friday 18 April 2014

Two Dutch businessmen that lately were diagnosed with ALS, a very deadly muscle disease that slowly destroys nerve cells through which muscles melt away, are collecting millions to finance vital genetic research. People who are diagnosed with ALS have around three years to live. It is the first time that the genetic variations of a disease have been mapped at such a large scale. 

Thursday 17 April 2014
New book: ‘Europe, a hazardous enterprise’

A new book by historian Dr Mathieu Segers has been published: ‘Europe, a hazardous enterprise’ (Waagstuk Europa ). In the book, Segers explores the past, present and future of Europe and outlines which problems concerning Europe the Netherlands will have to face.

Wednesday 16 April 2014
New European intermodal traffic routes, first terminal in Austria

It is not only major and smaller shipping companies that are forming alliances – ports are also improving the intermodal transport options that are available by merging several ports or by connecting them in a network. InlandLinks is an online platform for box terminals in the hinterland with intermodal services from and to Rotterdam, that comprises nearly 70 terminals based in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Poland, Italy, Austria and Hungary.

Tuesday 15 April 2014

The Netherlands is number one on the first transport scoreboard published by the European Commission last Friday. The scoreboard compares member state performance in 22 transport-related categories and highlights the top and bottom performer in each category. The Netherlands and Germany lead the list with high scores in 11 categories, followed by Sweden, the United Kingdom and Denmark.

Monday 14 April 2014

In March the Solicitor General advised the Supreme Court of the Netherlands that the paedophile association Martijn needs to be disbanded. This Friday the Supreme Court will give its verdict. Yesterday a letter to the editor from group of writers, professors and lawyers was published in De Volkskrant,  asking the Supreme Court to abandon the plan to ban the association Martijn, since it would endanger the freedom of association and freedom of speech seriously.

Friday 11 April 2014
Increase of home breweries exporting beer worldwide

Brewing beer at home is very hip in the Netherlands. Over the last years there has been a large increase of so-called micro-breweries. In general these small private breweries make special beers in the cellar, in the back of a cafe or in a public house. Lately some of these Dutch micro beers are exported worldwide in pretty large volumes. 

Thursday 10 April 2014

The Technical University Eindhoven is testing the latest 'cooperative driving' system for cars. The cars are connected with each other wirelessly. The new form of driving will cause much less traffic jams, because much more of the space on the highway is used. It is said that in five years especially trucks will drive cooperatively because it is much cheaper. The legislation and rules will have to change seriously.

Wednesday 9 April 2014
Food mafia has free play in the Netherlands

Since criminal gangs are focusing on the trade in fake food, Europol did its third world wide research after food fraud this year. Especially fake olive oil, biscuits, chocolate bars, stock cubes, honey and grain were seized. But criminals are also messing around with meat and alcohol, which results in serious health risks. After heavy budget cuts the Dutch food authority does not have the personnel to do enough controls. It seems the food mafia has free play at the second largest food producer in the world.

Tuesday 8 April 2014

GHB, a former  anaesthetic now used as drugs, is called the new heroine. Because it is extremely addictive and the craving is much stronger than with other drugs. GHB it very easy to make. It is just a mix of rim cleaner GBL, plunger (for unblocking drains) and distilled water. Lately the Dutch are testing a new remedy against the heavy GHB addiction. Baclofen, a medicine that is often used against the addiction of alcohol.

Monday 7 April 2014
Boom in Dutch performances Bach’s Passions

The Dutch are crazy about the Passions composed by Johann Sebastian Bach. In around two weeks’ time hundreds of performances of the Matthäus and Johannes Passion will take place throughout the Netherlands. The number of performances increased with 12%, from 169 last year to 189 this year. The busiest passion days are Palm Sunday (April 13) and Good Friday (April 18).

Sunday 6 April 2014

After all the outrage caused by the local elections speech of Geert Wilders in The Hague stimulating the public to shout for less Moroccans, the PVV is not changing its terminology. On the contrary. Today Geert Wilders presented the European elections poster of the PVV with the words 'Less EU'.

Friday 4 April 2014
Bad news for Europe’s bumblebees

According to a recent IUCN study 24% of European bumblebee species are threatened with extinction, which can have serious implications for the food production. The negative trends need to be reversed by protecting European bumblebee species and habitats, restoring degraded ecosystems and promoting biodiversity-friendly agricultural practices. The rescue can start in the Netherlands, since they are the heaviest pesticide user in Europe, but also the largest insect producer in the world.

Wednesday 2 April 2014

Over the last days the Dutch media and social media are full of reactions and analyses about the 'less Moroccans' election speech of Wilders and the early release of the owners of a jewellery store after they killed two Dutch Moroccan youngsters during a robbery. The slumbering dissatisfaction about, and of, young Dutch Moroccans has increased so much that experts fear that there is a serious danger that the situation will explode.  Should the Dutch be afraid for an eruption of violence? It is time to step out of the moral swamp and start a debate, otherwise society will keep on feeding right wing populists.