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Green Liberal Democrats Online Conference - Saturday 20th June - Sunday 5th July

Tim Farron and Graham Neale at GLD stall (Graham Neale)The 20th of June was when we originally intended for our GLD annual conference. Due to the pandemic, we will be kicking off a two-week online conference on this day instead.

The title of the GLD conference this year is: "2020 Vision: Intensive Care for Our Planet - a sustainable recovery that works for everyone".


We have now made enough progress with our programme for the GLD Summer Festival of Environmental Events to GO LIVE and encourage you to register as participants to an ambitious virtual festival, starting with a lively Conference on Saturday 20th June.

You need to be visiting Eventbrite to sign up for the fortnight of events, but don`t forget that GLD members will be entitled to significant discounts from the prices shown on the Eventbrite page.
The Earlybird price for members will be no more than £5 - for the discount code see the GLDNEWS email which all members received on 1st June (unless you opted out of emails).

Individual events will be added to the Eventbrite conference page as they are confirmed.

Tim Farron at the Penrith Auction MartTim Farron - Keynote Speaker
Former Lib Dem leader, Tim Farron will start the ball rolling late morning on the Saturday, with an assessment of what we have come through during the pandemic so far. Tim has a personal story to tell, of course, having been a victim of the corona virus himself some weeks ago. We are pleased to report he has come through the experience with views as to how we can emerge safely from the economic lock-down that has affected everyone, not only here but around the world.
The air is cleaner than it has been for a long time. We can see the stars more clearly. We can hear birdsong more vibrantly. Tim will lay out a road map for an environmentally better way to emerge than going "back to normal" as we knew it only a few months ago.
Chair of the Green Liberal Democrats (the Party`s Environmental Think Tank) Keith Melton will co-host the opening session with one of our former MEP`s, Councillor Jane Brophy. Participants will be able to interact with Tim Farronand discuss their own ideas of what the "New Normal" might look like.
If you want to ask a question in advance send your thoughts to chair@greenlibdems.org.uk - but you will also be able to ask questions live at the event on the day.

Breakout rooms
After the Keynote session there will be "Breakout Rooms" where you can go and meet fellow participants and talk politics informally while you enjoy your home-prepared lunch! You can, of course, choose your own favourite tipple to go with lunch, whether that is a glass of wine, a bottle of beer or a cup of your favoured tea, coffee or soft drink.
In the spirit of the last couple of years of GLD Conferences we would encourage you to organise yourself a Vegan lunch to lower the impact of your home refreshments, especially if you are normally a meat eater!

The Afternoon Sessions:

  1. Tackling a "Hot-Button topic"
    After lunch we will tackle a topic the Federal Conference Committee has wimped out of for two whole years of Spring and Autumn conferences. Our own Baroness Sue Miller and GLD Chair, Keith Melton, will co-host a session with Guest speaker Kate Hudson, the General Secretary of CND. Again, this will be a participative session, reviewing the reasons our Government has failed to ratify the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) which was passed at a UN conference in July 2017.
    In particular we also want to examine the COSTS of the UK`s nuclear weapons programme and the huge potential for using the money saved on scrapping the UK nuclear weapons programmes for environmentally sound emergence from the Covid19 pandemic lock-down. Many carbon reducing actions should eventually pay for themselves and have been costed to do so in our election manifestoes. However, there are some potential carbon-saving investments where the question is, typically, "where do we get the money to do that…?"
    For example, the insulation of older properties requires up-front investment to make the savings that will benefit particularly those whose lives are blighted by fuel-poverty.

  2. The GREEN Hustings
    After the tea-break we will bring together the expected candidates for the role of leader of the Liberal Democrats. As it stands at the moment, there will be three potential candidates who have all indicated that they will be throwing their hats into the ring. In alphabetical order, they are:
    Ed Davey MP
    Wera Hobhouse MP
    Layla Moran MP

    Each candidate will have ten minutes to make their pitches to members as to why they should become the next leader of the Party. This will then be followed by a Question and Answer session, with a rotation of who speaks first. Questions should be submitted in advance - and, since this session is to be part of our green Festival, we anticipate all questions should be related to environmental issues. A form will be available on the GLD website shortly to submit your questions via the conference page - in the meantime click [HERE] so send any questions by email.

  3. Interactive meetings
    At the end of the Hustings there will be a number of breakout rooms arranged for participants to get together and chat about the day`s activities in smaller groups. It is anticipated our candidates may wish to circulate and have informal chats through the rooms for a period after the formal proceedings are concluded. Feel free to refill your wine glasses, take another beer out of the fridge, or make yourself a cup of tea or coffee at this point!


More information will be added to the webpage over the next few days about details of upcoming events… Some of the HIGH spots are indicated below, so far without their dates and times (which may be subject to change before being published!...

Leadership Candidates' own events
As well as appearing in the Green Hustings together on Saturday 20th June, each of the candidates, Layla, Wera and Ed, will have their own hour-long events, to present their ideas to GLD members and other participants. These will also be live-streamed AND recorded for later transmission at your leisure on our YouTube account. (See HERE - a YouTube channel will be setup for the festival)

Greening the Party
There will be a "Face to Face" meeting with Liberal Democrat Party President, Dr Mark Pack, Which will be totally interactive - and we will get to ask our President what plans there are in place to make our own party a greener and more pro-actively green organisation. Clearly, our own GLD Festival of Green events and the Party`s online Autumn conference, have started that process - but you can have YOUR say about ideas we can develop to make the Party practice what we preach.

Photographic competition

One reason we are calling the two weeks (and three weekends) of Green Events a Festival is because it is not only about political resolutions and idea … but we will also be hosting a special covid-19 Lockdown Photo Competition. There will be Three Challenges to enter for, so start snapping, if you haven`t already. Details here

Face to Face meetings with our Lib Dem MPs
As well as the Leadership campaigns, where our Leadership candidates will be competing for your votes, we will also have the pleasure of the company of several more of out MPs during the two weeks of our Festival in "Face to Face" meetings. Munira Wilson, Daisy Cooper and Christine Jardine have all agreed to participate.
You can meet with them and discover more about their environmental views and discuss with them the sort of campaigns you would like to see, as we emerge from the pandemic economic lock-down. So, we will be chatting to more than half of our Parliamentary Party - and invitations have been sent to other MPs to join in some of the events we are setting up. So, watch this space for more info.

Keith Melton (GLD Chair)

Tim Farron at the Penrith Auction Mart