Authors4oceans: small steps to saving the planet

Authors4oceans is a collective of writers and illustrators that work together to encourage political, cultural and social change for healthy creatures, seas and coasts.

At the Hay Festival this afternoon, Authors4oceans pioneers Lauren St John, Nicola Davies, Jasbinder Bilan and Yuval Zommer discussed plastic waste and animal captivity, and the changes we should start to make to save the environment.

St John explained how her recent children’s novel, Kat Wolfe Takes the Case, took inspiration from growing up in Zimbabwe, where she was always surrounded by wild animals. “I grew up passionate about nature”, she said. Bilan’s novel Asha and the Spiritbird is also centred on her young life in the Himalayas.

“I always looked at animals like characters. I always treated them with respect”, said writer and illustrator Zommer, whose  Big Book of the Blue discusses the issue of plastic waste in the ocean, including pages of breath-taking hand-drawn images of rubbish floating in whales’ stomachs. 

“I want to turn my readers into advocates for the natural world”, said Davies. The author stressed that making even the smallest of changes can have a great impact. “There are potentially 20 million other species on this planet. We need to let them tell their stories”. 

This event was part of the Haydays strand for children and families.

 If you're interested in the environment please also see Event 252 at 11.30am on Thursday 30 May. If you like watching Hay Festival events digitally please sign up to the Hay Player for more from the world’s greatest thinkers. 

L-R: Yuval Zommer, Jasminda Bilan, Lauren St John, Nicola Davies

Picture by: Mathhew Harry