Adam Parker, New Forest Green District Councillor reports:
The amazingly eloquent Chris Packham gave a talk at our New Forest Green Party meeting in Brockenhurst in July 2023. Funny, energetic and inspiring, Chris spoke without notes on the climate and biodiversity crisis and how, as creative and intelligent humans, we have the solutions.
The BBC Springwatch presenter, naturalist, author and award-winning photographer said these solutions need to be implemented now, and quickly, and we all need to take a step or two up the ladder of activism to make this happen. One thing that we can all do is use our vote (at both General and local elections) and encourage our friends to vote, too.
Just this morning, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has announced a massive expansion of oil and gas drilling in the North Sea – which faced average temperatures 6C higher than normal last month, amid an extreme global heatwave – with around 100 new licenses issued.
In terms of protest, Chris talked about the Suffragettes protesting for votes for women, the fight to end slavery, the American Civil Rights movement, Black Lives Matter protests, Apartheid protests, and drew parallels with the fight to end oil and gas exploration.
He finished by urging us to read the lyrics of the Punk song ‘Shout Above the Noise’ by Penetration. We all have voices and we need to use them. Chris also mentioned the radical flank effect – namely, that when Just Stop Oil campaigners are active, donations to less radical environmental organisations, such as Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth, go up! We have to aim for the stars if we’re going to get to the sky.