“What happens next is up to every one of us,” warns Attenborough
Welcome to our inaugural column in the newly renamed Wokingham.Today (great job team).
It’s been a busy week or two in the world of Plastic Free Home too.
Last week I co-hosted a live Q&A session with zero waste business founder Kate Cottrell, who runs the fantastic Scoop in nearby Fleet.
Well worth a visit if and when you get time.
We weren’t sure how long it would last or whether we’d find an audience but had said that if we attracted more than ten viewers we’d be doing well.
As it happens, we were still going after 1 hour and 45 minutes, with 1,400 viewers during the course
of the evening and nearly that number again have watched the recorded version (on our Facebook page if interested).
We fielded questions on everything from bathroom and kitchen swaps to compost bins and electric cars.
I’ve also been busy writing for several publications and would like to thank a business I won’t name and a few eco brands for getting in touch and the Woodley Central WI Group for inviting me to speak in the spring of next year.
I’ve previously been invited to do so by businesses, local councillors, community groups, charities and schools and give my time freely when available, so do ask.
And this fortnight also saw us tuning in to what I would describe as one of the most important pieces of television ever made: Extinction: The Facts, With Sir David Attenborough.
Those of you who have followed Plastic Free Home for some time will know that Sir David was the main inspiration behind creating our online community in December 2018.
I often describe this as a ‘wake-up’ moment.
A point at which I, and we as a family, decided that enough was enough.
We wanted to do more and to try even harder when it comes to caring for our planet and living more sustainably.
Sir David has been busy promoting his newly released film, A Life On Our Planet, which is also accompanied by a book, and this week gave a poignant interview on BBC Breakfast.
The film will be available on Netflix once its run at the cinema is over.
I can’t wait.
To mark the occasion, I wanted to share some of Sir David’s most important words from the above.
Ones that we should all read to carefully and act upon instantly, before it’s too late. If these words don’t shock and sadden you sufficiently, nothing will.
“I’ve been making television programmes and certainly for the last 20, 30 years, I’ve ended them saying ‘look the world is in peril, look we are damaging it’ and very little has happened. Suddenly it’s as if people have woken up.
“We are facing a crisis and one that has consequences for us all.
“Treat the natural world as precious.
“Every breath of air we take, every mouthful of food we eat comes from the natural world ultimately and if we damage it we damage ourselves.”
“Over the course of my life I’ve encountered some of the world’s most remarkable species of animals.
“Only now do I realise just how lucky I’ve been – many of these wonders seem set to disappear forever.
“Studies suggest that extinction is now happening a hundred times faster than the natural evolutionary rate. And it’s accelerating.
“We are facing nothing less than the collapse of the living world – the very thing that gave birth to our civilisation. The thing we rely upon for every element of the lives we lead.
“We haven’t just ruined it… we’ve destroyed it.”
“We are bringing irreversible change.
“I may not be here to see it but if we make the right decisions at this critical moment, we can safeguard our planet’s ecosystems, its extraordinary biodiversity and all its inhabitants.
“One thing we do know, is that if nature is given the chance, it can bounce back.
“What happens next is up to every one of us.”