Dark Waters lawyer who became ‘DuPont’s worst nightmare’ to speak at Surrey’s Big Green Festival

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Dark Waters lawyer who became 'DuPont's worst nightmare' to speak at Surrey's Big Green Festival

The US lawyer ‘Dark Waters’, who took over the chemical company DuPont, speaks at the new Big Green Festival in Surrey this week.

The free online festival is being launched on Thursday (April 29) by the North Surrey Green Party to help raise awareness, promote people’s wellbeing and promote local businesses.

As depicted in the 2019 film in which he is played by Mark Ruffalo, Rob Bilott started out as a lawyer defending chemical companies.

But he was described by the New York Times as “the lawyer who became DuPont’s worst nightmare” after exposing the company to a decades-long history of chemical pollution.

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Kye Gbangbola, who lost his seven-year-old son Zane and was paralyzed by hydrogen cyanide after his home in Chertsey was flooded in 2014, attended a panel on the global water crisis on Saturday.

BBC investigative journalist Leana Hosea, who directed the award-winning film Thirst for Justice, will also speak on the panel at 7 p.m.

Organizer Jan Doerfel, a Spelthorne city councilor, said: “The pandemic has hit many people and made them isolated and fearful.

“At the same time, the climate emergency continues and urgently requires action.

“I started this festival so that people can have fun while drawing attention to important environmental issues such as protecting the green belt, water pollution and the risk of flooding.

“We want this festival to bring people together and enable them to do their part to protect the environment.

“I want to thank all of the generous individuals and small businesses who offer fantastic free classes from yoga to drawing to dancing and I wish you all a great time.”

The real Robert Bilott

Vegan Music Theater and Mike and Mechanics singer Tim Howar will be part of the Thursday 6pm panel. Live in better harmony with nature and report on how people can live more sustainably.

Friday, 4.30 p.m. Panel on green belts and green spaces in danger – what can we do? will include a specially recorded video message from wildlife expert and Springwatch host Chris Packham.

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The schedule is also jam-packed with fun classes like Thai Buddhist meditation, arts, baking, yoga, Pilates, dance, and singing.

The festival ends on Sunday at 5 p.m. with a mindfulness session from the Mindful Ninja from Shepperton.

The event will take place from Thursday, April 29 through Sunday, May 2, remotely via Zoom.

A full schedule and ticket registration can be found at https://www.thebiggreenfestival.com