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The Climate Forum hit a high with a positive effervescence of multi-faceted perspectives on the climate crisis. "Positivity" and "Negativity" battled it out on Saturday's major plenary with contributions from Michael Meacher MP, Caroline Lucas MEP, Tony Juniper (Director, Friends of the Earth), Isabel Fremaux from the Climate Camp and the Campaign's own Phil Thornhill . The Sunday 'International Plenary', meanwhile, exposed the audience to some perhaps less familiar perspectives from around the world - with Bangladesh, Nigeria, Belgium, Taiwan, Spain, Senegal and the Phillipines all represented on the panel. Workshops (50+!) as ever covered a multiplicity of themes but some very constructive, no-nonsense, discussion was had on major campaigning themes like Heathrow/Aviation and Kingsorth/New Coal. In particular John Macdonnel MP was able to offer a detailed and up to date analysyis of where the Heathrow campaign now stood - to those who made it to the early sunday morning seminar!
The Forum benefited greatly from its new less formal venue to create a very special special atmosphere of convivial creativity and down-to earth dialogue. A play reading, artistic installations and - on the Sunday - music from the Carbon Town Crier all livened up the more serious proceedings of debates and discussions. The Saturday Night Party - down in the Synergy Centre, Sarf o' the river - went with a swing whilst proceedings were rounded off on Sunday with some hands-on campaigning as forum-goers migrated en masse to the anti-Bush demo in Parliament Square, bringing with them the climate issue - which now became a part of the demonstration manifested through campaign placards and even more conspicuous symbols like our seven foot square 'globe-in-a-greenhouse' and 15 foot high "Bush Wanted for Crimes against the Planet" banner, which was hung from a convenient tree!
Fantastic line-up of Speakers included:
Michael Meacher MP, Caroline Lucas MEP, John McDonnell MP, Tony Juniper Director Friends of the Earth UK, Aubrey Meyer of the Global Commons Institute, Nazmul Chowdhury of Practical Action Bangladesh George Galloway MP, Wael Hmaidan of the League of Independent Activists (Lebanon), Abigail Jabines of Greenpeace International, Ichin Cheng of Taiwan Environmental Action Network, Dylan Penner of Stop Climate Chaos Canada, Mark Lynas author & journalist, Kate Hudson Chair of CND, Abdoul Aziz, Pan-African Network of Leaders (Senegal), Iskra Stojkosvska, of Citizens' Association "Front 21/42" of Macedonia, Larry Lohman from Corner House, Joss Garman from Greenpeace, Dr David Fleming of the Lean Economy Connection, Elaine Graham-Leigh from Respect, John Stewart of HACAN, Derek Wall Green Party Principal Speaker, Tony Kearns Senior Deputy General Secretary of the Communications Workers Union, Dr Stuart Parkinson Director of Scientists for Global Responsibility, Deepak Rughani of Biofuel Watch, Joyce Edmond-Smith Chair of the Network of Engaged Buddhists, Ronnie Hall of the Global Forest Coalition, Colin Baines Ethics Adviser to the Co-operative Group/Bank, Daniel Tanuro from Climat et Justice Sociale, Belgium, Leila Deen from the World Development Movement, Velio Albert Kallio from the Protection Campaign of the Artic and North Atlantic Oceans, Paul Hampton from the Labour Research Department, Kevin Smith from Carbon Trade Watch, Cath Long Programme Director Rainforest Foundation UK, Dr Marion Birch of MEDACT, Professor Andy Haines from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Oliver Sylvester-Bradley from Solar Century, Mike Edwards from CAFOD, Chris Keene Climate Policy Adviser of the UK Green Party, John Kentish from People&Planet, Muzammal Hussain from the London Islamic Network for the Environment, Geraldine Nicholson from NoTRAG, Vivienne Cato Co-founder the NOAH project, Jonathan Neill author, Mark Dowd from Operation Noah, Cat Hobbs from the Campaign for Better Transport, Richard Dourthwaite and Brian Davey from Cap and Share, Steve Stretton from the Cambridge Centre for Climate Change Mitigation Research, Edmund Davey from the Optimum Population Trust, Gerry Wolff Coordinator TREC-UK, Julie White Anti Road Expansion campaigner, Dan Vockins President of USSU, John Jopling from FEASTA, Andrew Birkby from the Young Greens UK, Dan Glass of Plane Stupid, Amanda Baker from the Vegan Society, Sandra White Jungian counsellor and Ecopsychologists, Julie Roberts Animal Rights campaigner, Claire Fauset from Corporate Watch, Cathy Green from One Tonners, Rajesh Makwana and Adam Parsons from Share the World’s resources, Jenny Mackay from Communities against Toxics, Dave Morris from Sustainable Haringey, David Wilsdon from Green Accountancy, Tarek El Diwany author, Peter Challen Chair of the Christian Council for Monetary Justice, Sophie Christopher of Sustainable Ecoplanning, Isabel Fremaux from the Camp for Climate Action, Darren Johnson Green Party GLA Assembly member, Murad Qureshi, Labour Party Assembly member, Chris Church of London 21, Rhania Khan RESPECT councillor for Tower Hamlets, Adrienne Campbell and Duncan Law from Transition Towns (Lewes and Brixton), Christian Hunt and Richard Hawkins from Zero Carbon Britain ……….and many, many more
Aviation: Stopping Heathrow expansion
No new coal: stopping Kingsnorth
Biofuels: stopping a tragedy unfolding
Climate Justice / Ecosocialism / Climate Science: what are they saying now ? / Carbon Trading: a false solution / Climate change and conflict / Direct Action / Food: can we save the world by changing the way we eat? / Population Control: the way to cool the climate ?/ Contraction & Convergence or Cap & Share: the ecological economics underpinning future climate solutions / Energy & Anarchy: the need to escape from market-based thinking / Youth and climate change: campaigning for our future! / Transport: fastest growing source of UK GHG emissions / Banking, Economics and Climate Change / Small businesses and our environment / Low carbon-cities, or low impact councils? / Climate change and faith / Is capitalism wrecking our planet?
Climate-themed drama with the Net Curtains Theatre Company
Music with the Carbon Town Crier and others
Tea/coffees and catering from the Brixton Tea Party
Entry - recommended donation of £5 for 1 day, £8 for 2 days.
Anti-Bush demo on Sunday: after the International Plenary you can help us prepare for a "Climate Block" at the anti-Bush demo in Parliament Square in the evening (starts 5.00 pm). Help us take the climate message to the demo with climate-themed banners and placards : Bush No 1 Climate Criminal, US must accept binding cuts in emissions and stop sabotaging the international climate talks ..etc..etc...
"Climate Caper" at the Synergy Centre, 7 pm to late, Saturday evening
Planetman - Forty Thieves Orkestar - Brothers Bab
plus DJs, films, spoken word, bar, hot food, facepainting, climate themed artwork, massage and campaign stalls
10.30-12.00 Workshop I
15.00-16.30 Workshop II
17.00-18.00 Open space
From 19.00 Saturday Night Party at Synergy Centre -
09.30-11.00 Workshop III
11.30-13.00 Workshop IIII
13.00-14.00 Option: Lunch, Networking and Global Campaign presentation or
15.30-17.00 Prepare for Climate Block at anti-Bush demo
17.00- Climate Block at anti-Bush demo in Parliament Square