THE WEBSITE OF PHILIP HOWSE
OBE FRES. PROF. EMERITUS IN BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES, UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON
AND THE TEMPORARY WEBSITE OF THE DORSET HOP TALKS
THE DORSET HELP OUR PLANET (HOP) PROJECT
What is HOP?
HOP is a not-for- profit venture aimed motivating individuals, families and local communities to help combat the effects of climate change and environmental degradation.
Over 50 years ago, on the subject of the environment, the writer John Fowles concluded:
“What we don’t, or won’t know, is that the getting-right cannot be left to government... Conservation can never be somebody else caring. It is you caring. Now”
Today we face alarmist attention-grabbing headlines which collectively paint a picture of environmental chaos, and a culture of blame aimed at governments and society at large. It is no surprise that many ordinary people feel helpless.
Western government policies are focussed increasingly on persuading people to reduce their carbon footprint, with a focus on energy and fossil-fuels, but this is only one of the environmental issues we face.
The peaceful protests of organisations such as the Green Party and Extinction Rebellion have had only limited impact on the everyday thinking and the personal motivation of large segments of the population.
Governments can only make and implement policies from the top down, but there is much we as individuals and communities can do on an everyday basis to contribute from the bottom up.
To promote this local action HOP is being established by a group of people in West Dorset who are passionate about explaining the big issues to everyone while at the same time promoting tangible actions for every individual and community to implement in their everyday lives to make a material aggregate difference to the local, national, and global, picture.
Who Are We?
HOP is the brainchild of Philip Howse OBE (Professor Emeritus,University of Southampton), who has expended considerable personal effort in getting HOP to this stage.
He is supported in this by Patrons:
Prof. Sir Ghillean Prance CBE James Lovelock CBE
Dr. George McGavin
The core team involved in setting up and operating HOP are:
Prof. Philip Howse OBE
Prof. Sir Ghillean Prance, CBE (former Director of the Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew)
Dr Rob Jayne (Independent Film-maker)
Dr Bob Hardwick (former head of energy conservation company)
Barry Bates (former educationalist and Arts Theatre Director)
Tom Jones ( former Director of Children’s Services)
David Witham (Financial Consultant)
A wide range of other influential people in West Dorset with appropriate skills and contacts have also offered their personal and/or corporate contributions as needed by HOP from time to time.
What Are We Doing?
HOP has retained over 20 well-known scientists, journalists and writers to give public presentations on their particular area of expertise as it relates to climate change and the environment.
Each talk concludes with a number of messages for the audience to take away and implement in their daily lives to help alleviate the particular issues highlighted in the talks.
Following each talk is a panel discussion to enable the audience to participate in relevant Q&A.
Each session is filmed by an experienced local documentary film-maker.
None of these people are being paid for their work or taking expenses.
The talks are being given at the Marine Theatre in Lyme Regis, which is generously passing on the ticket revenue, less the direct expenses of the evening, to HOP, which passes the amounts received to a charity of the speaker’s choice, less a small percentage to cover HOP’s own operating costs.
The edited films will be placed in a library on HOP’s website, available for download, with details of how to make voluntary contributions to HOP to be passed on to the relevant charity.
The purpose of the website library will be to spread the message, nationally and internationally.
The films will be copyrighted for public showing, but Educational, and public institutions and societies will be granted a free licence to show the films at events and courses run by them on the understanding that they will voluntarily pass on to HOP a percentage of the revenues they generate.
Achievements So Far
June 2021 Talk by Prof. Sir Ghillean Prance on Tropical rain forest destruction: a major cause of Climate change,
July 2021 Filmed Talk by Prof. Jennifer Preece on Citizen Science projects
August 2021 Talk by Dr. Tom Brereton on Whales and Dolphins in Lyme Bay and beyond.
Further talks in 2021 will be:
Sept 14th. Dr. George McGavin: What have insects ever done for us and what can we do for them?
October 12th. Derek Gow: Bringing back the Beaver and its Pals.
November 9th. Patrick Barkham: Why children need more nature in their lives and
how we can provide this
December 7th. Prof Charles Foster: Being a Beast
Talks that have been filmed and edited but the talk has not yet been presented to a live audience :
Prof Dave Goulson: Silent Earth, averting the insect apocalypse
Dr. Owen Day: Community-based reef restoration in the Caribbean
Prof Jennifer Preece: The development of Citizen Science projects
Dr. Tom Mortlock: Climate change and extreme weather – the Australian experience Alan Bowley: Wetlands, a story of change
Every person listed above is acting in a purely voluntary capacity, but even so HOP will have some ongoing operating expenses, which it will ultimately aim the cover from its income stream. However, in the first instance HOP needs to establish an operating reserve to enable it to manage its day-to-day position and cover unexpected contingencies. Examples of regular expenses are:
*Costs of establishing HOP as a formal legal entity and opening a bank account
*Upfront and ongoing costs of setting up and maintaining a quality website Paying for marketing, publicity, banking, accountants and legal fees Costs of commissioning back-up film maker
The sponsors of HOP wish to raise a total of £5000.
We are seeking financial donations from individuals and organisations to build this reserve and formally launch HOP on its mission