Panel Four: Where do we go from here?

David Whyte – moderator

Professor David Whyte is Professor of Climate Justice at Queen Mary University of London, where he is the Director of the CCCCJ and leads on a number of Centre’s research projects that deal with the complicit and active role of governments and corporations in climate change. He has published fourteen books on the political economy of regulation and on corporate power, including a number of key works dealing with environmental harm. His latest book is Ecocide: kill the corporation before it kills us (Manchester University Press, 2021)

Melinda Janki 

Melinda Janki is the 2023 winner of the prestigious Commonwealth Lawyers Conference Rule of Law Award for her work to uphold the rule of law in Guyana and internationally. She currently leads litigation against dangerous deep water oil drilling offshore Guyana. In 2023 she achieved a globally unprecedented win when a court ordered an unlimited parent company guarantee to be provided by ExxonMobil Corporation. She has also cut Exxon’s permits down from 20+ years to 5 years and obtained decisions establishing liberal standing for public interest litigants. Melinda co-founded Lawyers are Responsible (LAR), a group of prominent lawyers taking action on the climate crisis. She successfully lobbied for the right to a healthy environment in Guyana’s constitution now being used in the biggest climate change case in the world. Melinda formerly worked for oil super major BP and other oil companies.

Clare Farrell 

Clare Farrel is a co-founder of Extinction Rebellion, and her work to date has included coordinating the creative team that delivered the name, identity and messaging that the movement set out with in 2018. Clare now works with the movement’s U.K. media team and acts as a spokesperson, and more recently is a co-founder of the Humanity Project.

Esther Stanford-Xosei 

Esther Stanford-Xosei is a Jurisconsult, decolonial Reparationist, and Community Advocate specialising in the critical legal praxis of ‘law as resistance’ as an approach to social movement-lawyering, Mother Earth Jurisprudence and eco-socio-legal transformation from below. In this regard, Esther serves as the Coordinator-General of the Stop The Maangamizi: We Charge Genocide/ Ecocide Campaign (SMWeCGEC) and is the Executive Director of it’s educational arm, the Maangamizi Educational Trust.

Esther’s scholar-activist work in championing ‘Planet Repairs’; as the nexus between cognitive justice, reparatory justice and environmental justice, has contributed to the establishment of the International Network of Scholars & Activists for Afrikan Reparations (INOSAAR), of which she is a Co-Facilitator as well as the XR-Being The Change Affinity Network (XR-BCAN), a growing network of communities of resistance in unifying peoples’ power to effect and secure Planet Repairs.

Caroline Hickman

Caroline Hickman is a psychotherapist and lecturer at the University of Bath researching children and young people’s emotional responses to climate change around the world for 12 years, examining eco-anxiety & distress, eco-empathy, trauma, moral injury and intergenerational stresses. She is co-lead author on a 2021 quantitative global study into children & young people’s emotions & thoughts about climate change published in The Lancet Planetary Health linking children’s distress with government inaction on climate change. She has been developing a range of therapeutic & educational tools for ecological distress, a psychological assessment model for eco-anxiety, and delivered workshops in climate psychology, emotional resilience, and mental health internationally.

Asad Rehman 

Asad Rehman is the Executive Director of the radical anti-poverty and social justice charity War on Want. Asad is a leading climate justice activist whose work has helped to reframe the climate crisis as a crisis of neoliberal capitalism, inequality and racism, over the last 35 years he has worked with a number of social movements.