What if… cities produced their own food? Or we left oil in the ground? Or we could all create money? Or we imagined and created new and better ways to live.
What can we do? NOW.
A nationwide ‘Festival of Transition’, coordinated by nef (the new economics foundation) and the Transition Network with the support of MMM, has begun, running until 20th June, the first day of the 20th UN Earth Summit in Rio.
Instead of flying to Brazil, create something positive about climate change and the economic crisis in your own community, whether you're a gallery, a museum, a theatre group, a musician, an artist or just someone wanting to make a difference.
A unique mixture of walks, talks and a DIY day of action on 20th June, the festival combines a series of organised events around the country with an open invitation to anyone (artists, schools, workplaces and community groups) to stage our own ‘real-life experiments’ in living differently on 20th June.
So far ‘What if?’ events include:
· 19th/20th May at the Bristol Festival of Ideas: ‘What if… we left the oil in the ground?’ with author James Marriot and ‘What if… we could create money as well as the banks?’ with nef and the newly launched Bristol Pound
· 30th May at the Hay Festival: ‘What if… we turned back the climate clock?’ with poet Lemn Sissay and Greenpeace chief executive John Sauven and ‘What if… cities produced our food?’ in association with the Soil Association
· 6th June at the Royal College of Art: ‘What if… creatives redesigned economics?’ with nef and Occupy Design
· 13th June at the Museum of East Anglian Life: ‘What if.. the sea keeps rising?’
· 14th June at Manchester Museum: ‘What if… Manchester was as sustainable as Havana?’
And ‘Transition Walks’:
· 22nd May: ‘In the shadow of the City: A walk through the history of the Corporation’, with author Nick Robins
· 23rd May: ‘On London's Oil Road: A journey to the heart of the energy economy’, in association with Platform London
If you want to do something, start by pledging to stage 24-hour experiments in living differently on 20th June via the FESTIVAL OF TRANSITION website.
Andrew Simms from the new economics foundation said:
“This summer thousands of people will fly to Brazil to wait and watch as politicians struggle to mark the 20th anniversary of the Rio Earth Summit, hoping for action to meet the scale of the climate crisis. International political action is vital, but we’ve moved beyond leaving it all to big, global conferences. People are impatient and want to take action themselves. The Festival of Transition is an opportunity to question, taste, and experiment with living better within life-preserving environmental limits. We believe that once people take a first step, they’ll want to keep on walking.”
And we couldn't agree more.