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Festival EventThis event is a part of Book Fringe 2022 series. Click to view more from this festival.

A Matter of Life: Hope, Wellbeing and Young Environmentalism

Featured Speakers

Ellen Miles & Chris Saltmarch

This event is a part of Book Fringe 2022 series. Click to view more from this festival.

Today’s youth are growing up with environmental crises as a basic narrative – a canvas on which life and choices happen. With that comes a largely altered vision of personal and societal futures compared to earlier generations in our part of the world. Beyond grief or despair, many are finding solidarity, purpose and joy in collective action, in celebrating community, the natural world, and connecting internationally with others.

We invite you to an inspiring conversation between people making change, and handling the reality of being young at this time. Ellen Miles is the founder of Nature is a Human Right and editor of the book by the same name. Chris Saltmarch is the co-founder of Labour for a Green New Deal.

Our speakers:

Ellen Miles is a greenspace equity activist from London. In 2020, Ellen founded Nature is a Human Right, the campaign for the United Nations to recognise daily contact with greenspace as a human right. This year, several of the campaign's eminent supporters – including Dr Qing Li, Ron Finley, Jay Griffiths, Nick Hayes, Poppy Okotcha and Clover Hogan – came together to share their essays for the cause in a celebrated anthology, edited by Ellen, Nature is a Human Right. Ellen also runs Dream Green, a guerrilla gardening social enterprise that equips people to green their neighbourhoods, through content and workshops. In her spare time, she can be found guerrilla gardening, wild swimming, and reading and writing poetry.

Chris Saltmarsh is a socialist climate justice campaigner and writer. His first book 'Burnt: Fighting for Climate Justice' (Pluto Press) explains climate change as a crisis of capitalism; evaluates the successes and limitations of Extinction Rebellion, youth strikes and the Green New Deal; and offers a blueprint for the movement we need to win, including militant trade unions, mass street mobilisations, direct-action and radical electoral strategies capable of capturing state power. Chris has also written extensively about climate politics and movements for outlets including Tribune, Jacobin, Novara Media, the Times, Vice and the Ecologist. He is a co-founder of the campaign group Labour for a Green New Deal through which he's organised to radicalise the Labour Party's climate policy most notably ahead of the 2019 general election. He previously coordinated the fossil fuel divestment campaign across UK universities as well as working on campaigns for banks and insurance companies to cut ties with the fossil fuel industry. He has also taken part in direct-action campaigns, including against the UK fracking industry.

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