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World leaders gather for climate summit, urging action to combat global warming

HAY FESTIVAL, the world’s leading festival of ideas, and Hive Energy, a green energy company, have jointly launched “Planet Assembly” on Earth Day. This project aims to seek grassroots solutions to the climate emergency through civic space. Each morning of the Hay Festival 2023, which will run from May 25 to June 4, two-hour public workshops will focus on seeking solutions that empower everyone to be accelerators and multipliers for the dramatic policy transformations needed to tackle the climate and biodiversity emergencies. These workshops will be open to anyone who wants to participate, and the results of each session will be condensed into a daily bulletin available online for free. Over ten days, the goal is to create a draft playbook for practical action that everyone from policy makers to activists, corporations to sole traders, will take forward with inspiration and support to achieve meaningful change for all of us.

Daily input and provocations will come from leading scientists, experts, and storytellers, covering topics such as energy, health, food, mobility, water, fashion, biodiversity, and housing. Meanwhile, the final plenary session will bring together all the outputs into a call to action at the Festival’s close. The sessions will be driven by sustainability entrepreneur Andy Middleton, and expert contributors through the ten days will include the Climate Group CEO Helen Clarkson, former Welsh Government Minister for Environment and Sustainability Jane Davidson, Compassion in World Farming International CEO Philip Lymbery, Professor of Globalisation and Development at the University of Oxford Ian Goldin, business leaders Juliet Davenport and Sara Vaughan, Chair of Natural England Tony Juniper, Director of Economics for the Climate Champions Team Simon Sharpe, Director of Cambridge Zero Emily Shuckburgh, and more.

Hay Festival CEO Julie Finch said that “Planet Assembly” is a “public engine room for uplift” and a “bold new Hay Festival project to tackle the biggest challenge facing our world today.” Andy Middleton also stated that “We’re bringing experts and citizens together to imagine and develop the practical solutions that close the gap between ideas and actions to address our climate and nature crisis, with buckets of imagination and collaboration.” Hive Energy Founder Giles Redpath added, “We know that climate change poses devastating impacts to our planet, and we need to act now to reduce our emissions and greenhouse gases. Planet Assembly presents a fantastic opportunity to educate visitors on a range of climate and sustainability issues that we are facing across the globe, from energy and housing to biodiversity and health. We need to work together to create a safe and secure future for ourselves, and our planet, and this is a great opportunity to engage in discussion and solution building.”

Planet Assembly is a central part of Hay Festival 2023’s sustainability programme, which also includes the Hay-on-Earth Forum, conversations with some of the world’s leading climate activists, and the Festival’s own pioneering work to mitigate negative environmental impacts. Other sustainability guests featured throughout the week include journalist George Monbiot, Leon co-founder Henry Dimbleby, activists Mikaela Loach and Mya-Rose Craig, co-executive director of Greenpeace Areeba Hamid, seaweed specialist Vincent Doumeizel, science writer Gaia Vince, and more.

Hay Festival is held in sustainable events that bring readers and writers together on the edge of the Brecon Beacons National Park. The festival offers insights and debate around significant global issues, such as climate change. This year’s program will feature award-winning writers, policy makers, pioneers, and innovators from around the world who will offer big thinking and bold ideas on this topic. Among the guests previously announced are writers Margaret Atwood, Barbara Kingsolver, Eleanor Catton, Max Porter, Jonathan Coe, Leïla Slimani, Fflur Dafydd, Caleb Azumah Nelson, Alys Con