NOS weatherman Gerrit Hiemstra has been awarded the 2021 Machiavelli prize for his role in explaining climate change to the wider public.
The award was first handed out in 1989 and is given to the person or people the Machiavelli Foundation considers have made a special contribution to communication between politicians, government and the general public.
The jury said Hiemstra had unwittingly become a figurehead of the climate movement thanks to his calm and clear approach and his use of facts and scientific sources in his explanations.
‘In plain language, he crosses swords with climate sceptics at home and abroad,’ the jury said. ‘With great patience, he replies to people who respond to his messages.’
Last year the prize was given to virologist Marion Koopmans and doctor Diederik Gommers, for their role in explaining the coronavirus pandemic.
Previous winners include Elliot Higgins of journalism collective Bellingcat, the SheDecides reproductive rights campaign group and queen Máxima when she was still princess.
Hiemstra said it was an honour to receive the prize.
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