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Ledecka writes history with gold on parallel-giant slalom

Ester Ledecka wrote history on Saturday at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang. The 22-year-old Czech won the parallel-language slalom when snowboarding, after she was already the best on the super-G when skiing.

Ledecka is the first woman ever to take gold at two different parts at the same Games. She defeated the German Selina Joerg in the final of the parallel giant slalom, who had to settle for silver. Ramona Hofmeister, also from Germany, took the bronze.

“This feels very good, I have had a lot of support from my team and I am very grateful for everything they have done for me, without them I would not have been here,” Ledecka said after her victory.

“There was a lot of pressure on my shoulders during the last week, and after the super-G I got a lot of congratulations, but that meant I could not focus on snowboarding, but everyone reminded me of how well I had done as a skier. “

The Czech tried to focus on snowboarding afterwards. “That was difficult, but today suddenly the snowboard star came up in me again, I went down with confidence and I enjoyed the races.”

Ledecka has no preference for one of her two gold medals. “I have a snowboard side and a ski slope, this is a big day for snowboard-Ester, and both gold medals are very satisfying.”


Michelle Dekker, the only Dutch participant, did not finish the qualifying earlier in the day. The 21-year-old snowboard star finished seventeenth, one position too low to continue to the eighth finals.

The two qualifying runs of the parallel-giant slalom were initially scheduled for Thursday in Pyeongchang, but due to the bad weather conditions, the games were moved to Saturday.

In the men’s gold went to the Swiss Nevin Galmarini, the silver was for the Korean Sangho Lee and the Czech Zan Kosir won the bronze.

Lee’s medal was the first medal of South Korea’s guest country ever in the snow.


Gold clogs hidden in Amsterdam for gold hunting

The initiators of Gold Rush Amsterdam have hidden two gold clogs this week that are worth hundreds of euros. They organize a gold hunt to make people aware of the colonial past of the city.

The gold nuggets together have a value of five hundred euros and can be found in places that have to do with the colonial past of Amsterdam.

It is the second time that the gold hunt is organized. The organization of the game post a hint every day on their Facebook page, to find the clogs.

Black page

The hints refer to black envelopes that contain an indication of a ‘black page’ from the Amsterdam history of the Golden Age, in which a few letters are hidden. Ten letters are needed to find the location of the gold nuggets.

For example, the ornaments on the palace on Dam Square and the mayor’s house refer to the history of slavery, says Heilbron.


Heilbron thinks that more is known with the history of slavery. “In the textbooks, the Golden Age is not often associated with slavery, most Dutch people know a great deal about the Second World War, but almost nothing about our history of slavery.”

Last year one of the gold nuggets was hidden at the slavery monument in the Oosterpark.

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National Geographic investigates ‘own racist past’

The world-famous American magazine National Geographic examines its own history, which according to the current editor-in-chief is infused with racism.

A few months ago, the editors of the magazine began preparations for the April issue, which focuses on the subject of race.

In conversation with The Washington Post, National Geographic editor-in-chief Susan Goldberg said that the magazine itself was guilty of stereotyping and exploiting indigenous peoples in its thirty-eight-year history.

To clarify this conclusion, Goldberg asked the American professor John Edwin Mason to study the history of the magazine.
‘Noble wanted’

Mason is not only specialized in the history of photography, but also in the history of Africa. According to him, National Geographic completely ignored black Americans in his publications until the 1970s. In addition, the magazine too often portrayed natives nude and clichéd as ‘noble savages’.

Goldberg has commented on Mason’s findings in a editorial and motivates her choice of research by pointing out that she is the first female, Jewish editor-in-chief of the magazine’s history.

“We first have to review our own history before we tell others how to tackle racism.”

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The Netherlands is writing history with subsidy-free wind farms at sea

With one of the first large offshore wind farms that can be built without subsidy, history is written. Never before has a wind farm developer in the Netherlands been able to build at such low costs. But does this mean that the North Sea is being built up quickly? Probably not.

Professor of wind energy Gerard van Bussel of Delft University of Technology calls the development exciting. He explains that a developer must sail sharply to build a wind farm at such low cost.

“It’s a story that’s on the edge of what’s possible, you really have to get everything out of the closet, things like financing have to be arranged cheaply and you have to anticipate the latest technology that’s available, and then I’ll squeeze my buttocks against each other or it is indeed going to work, it is much faster than everyone thought. “

The wind farm is not the first wind farm in Northwest Europe that will be built without subsidy. The Danish company Dong Energy has already stated that it is possible to build wind farms in Germany that do not need a subsidy. An important difference is that the Dutch wind farm must become operational earlier and must therefore use other technology.

Full building

Whether the entire North Sea can now be quickly built up? Probably not, says Van Bussel. These wind farms are built at a relatively short distance from the coast and there is not that much space left. In that case, only large locations will remain at 80 to 100 kilometers from the coast.

It is the third tender in a series of five that the Dutch government keeps. At the first tender, for the Borssele wind farm that comes off the coast of Zeeland, the required cost price of the Dutch government was already considerably lower than expected.

The low costs are partly due to technological development. Wind turbines are becoming larger and more efficient and this development is likely to continue in the future. Developers are thus less per windmill lost, for example, installation costs.

Dutch design

In the Netherlands, the specific design of the Dutch government is involved. The government has taken control and ensures that companies run the risk as little as possible. All data about the locations are collected by the government and are freely available. That initial investment does not have to do all five parties.

Furthermore, the connection is centralized by high-voltage grid operator TenneT. Due to the scale and expertise of TenneT this is much cheaper. For example, developers can ultimately offer the lowest possible price, which means that the government loses less money in the long term.

Finger in the porridge

For this the government had a much less big finger in the porridge. A developer was allowed to build a wind farm at a location, did some calculations on the costs and told the government how much subsidy was needed. “At one point the government said that it should be looked at a little more systematically.”

Van Bussel remains a bit skeptical. “You can say that you want to build now, but suppose it’s a bit against all by 2020. Of course you can always return the assignment, even though the companies guarantee that they do not think so.” Developers then have to pay a fine. “I also do not think that will happen that fast, but there is still a kind of escape clause.”

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