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Hay on Earth 2010: Context

2010 is a year of political change and opportunity, and a time to once again make personal choices about action, activism and engagement in the issues that affect our future. The factors discussed as 'critical' at Hay on Earth in 2008 are still with us, with ever-clearer evidence about the need for action and speed.

Although the failure of Copenhagen COP15 in December 2009 and the 'Climategate' University of East Anglia email saga skewed focus away from the practicalities of change, I sense a growing realisation that the shift that needs to happen is down to us - practitioners, facilitators, business and community leaders, householders and citizens - rather than politicians who have little time to develop the knowledge that is needed about how change actually happens.

Recent papers on peak oil from ITPOES, the Industry Task Force on Peak Oil and Energy Security, Deutsche Bank and many others, support the connection between oil and food resilience, and the liklihood of fluctuations in both price and availability.

In this, the International Year of Biodiversity, there have been highlights of good news, with some species feared lost rediscovered in small pockets, yet the overall trend is fragile, with a much higher level rate of extinction than for the last 100,000 years.

Now, as always we have choices to make. Be the change, or wait for others to move first...