The headline speakers for The Problem with Plastic (and what to do about it) have been announced. Join them for the opening event for Festival of the Sea 2020 on 13 February.

Lucy Siegle

Lucy Siegle is a writer, broadcaster and public speaker on environmental issues and sustainability. Over 14 years she has honed her expertise as eco expert and journalist at The Observer and The Guardian and is well known on British TV for bringing the problem of single use plastic to widespread attention. Her book, Turning the Tide on Plastic: How Humanity (and you) Can Make Our Globe Clean Again is published by Orion.

Lucy’s onscreen work includes regular spots on The One Show and she recently presented a special edition of ITV Tonight on microplastics and human health where she and her home were tested for tiny fragments of plastic and chemicals. Lucy is also an authority on the environmental and social footprint of the global fashion industry through her book To Die For: Is Fashion Wearing out the World? and as producer of Netflix feature documentary The True Cost.

At The Problem with Plastic (and what to do about it) Lucy will set out the context of our use of plastic as a material and highlight solutions that people can adopt in accessible ways.

Natalie Fee

Natalie is an award-winning environmentalist, author, inspirational speaker and founder of City to Sea, a not-for-profit organisation running campaigns to stop plastic pollution. She has recently been awarded the Sunday Times Volvo Visionaries Award for her campaign work, honorary Doctor of Science by University of the West of England in recognition of her services to the environment, and is listed as one of the UK’s 50 New Radicals by The Observer and Nesta

Natalie’s City To Sea projects include Switch The Stick, Plastic-Free Periods, Unflushables, Plastic-Free Travel and Refill. She is author of How To Save The World For Free.

During The Problem With Plastic (and what to do about it) Natalie will talk about her personal journey as an activist and environmentalist, the link between your bathroom and the sea, and how campaigning can work when we work together.

David Jones

David is a science researcher and environmentalist, with a former career in the military. He is a widely published photojournalist and diver and has worked on a number of TV and film productions with the likes of David Attenborough, Bear Grylls and Ben Fogle, including the BBC Life series and A Plastic Ocean. David is the founder of Just One Ocean and The Big Microplastic Survey, and is a well-known international speaker on sustainability and macro-economic solutions to ocean pollution.

At the Problem With Plastic (and what to do about it) David will talk about the value of plastic, changes to ocean habitats, and strategic change.

Jessica Hickie

The event is chaired by Jessica Hickie, Programme Manager for Plastics and Sustainability at the Environment Agency. Over the last decade Jessica has combined her knowledge of plastic with science research and education, designing education materials for the Plastics Oceans Foundation and researching the film A Plastic Ocean.

In addition to chairing the The Problem With Plastic (and what to do about it) Jessica will highlight upcoming changes to plastics legislation for business, as well as upcoming projects in the region where people can get involved.

Launch Speakers:  Geoff Holt MBE DL and Steve Bomford

Geoff Holt MBE DL is one of the UKs most accomplished sailors and author of Walking On Water. He is the founder of Wetwheels, a local charity taking disabled people to sea in fully accessible boats, and a supporter of researching plastic solutions around the shores of Portsmouth.

Steve Bomford is Co-director of Company of Makers, designers of products inspired by military-wear and providers of workshops for ex-Service  personnel and their families. He is a campaigner for environmental concerns in Portsmouth.

Steve and Geoff will proudly launch Jetsam at The Problem With Plastic (and what to do about it) – a free app for all of Portsmouth to use, to improve our understanding of plastic waste in our waters and what solutions might be put in place to reduce its impact.