The Coronavirus lockdown has given everyone a chance to stop and take stock of what’s important. Many are seeing it as a chance to look towards a greener and more sustainable future. In fact, I wrote about my own hopes for life after Coronavirus in this blog post.
In reality, the lockdown is an extremely frustrating time for environmental activists across the city – reusable coffee cups are banned for the foreseeable, and we’re ordering more takeaways (and generating more packaging waste) than ever. Meanwhile, in the interests of staff safety, Cardiff Council is currently incinerating all waste, including all plastic and glass.
There is also uncertainty about how the UK government will respond to the inevitable economic downturn to come; will it begin to rely more on sustainable solutions, or continue to invest in fossil fuels?
“Lockdown has brought all campaigning to a grinding halt,” says Bryony Haynes from Cardiff Friends of the Earth, a volunteer group that campaigns on local, regional and national environmental issues. “Organised group activities like tree planting, workshops, direct action, and protests are all out of the question for the foreseeable future.”
“There’s not much we can do until the lockdown is lifted. Our feeling is that now might be a good opportunity to spend time informing ourselves, fuelling the fire that encourages us to call for change, and planning for a greener, more sustainable future in South Wales and beyond.”
In this spirit, Friends of the Earth Cymru will be hosting a virtual screening of The Story Of Plastic – and they’re inviting everyone to join a post-screening Q&A to help spur on local action as the lockdown lifts.
Join the Live Q&A | Wednesday 20th May
Spanning three continents, The Story of Plastic illustrates an ongoing catastrophe: fields full of garbage, veritable mountains of trash, rivers and seas clogged with waste, and skies choked with the poisonous emissions from plastic production and processing.
To receive a link to watch the film at home, just follow this Eventbrite ticket link and register (for free). Once registered, you will be emailed a screening link to watch the film in your own time, and a Zoom link to join the Q&A on Wednesday evening.
The film will *only* be available to view from Sunday 17th May to Wednesday 20th May.
Then, on Wednesday 20th May at 7.30pm, join plastic-free campaigners from across Wales to discuss the film’s key messages and how communities can take action. I’ll be on the panel, along with other Q&A guests including expert activists Bleddyn Lake from Friends of the Earth Cymru and Laura Sanderson from Surfers Against Sewage.
Let’s #StayAtHome and #BreakFreeFromPlastic – hope to see you there x