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My Q&A: My Newham - Environmental campaigner Jonathan Eldridge

PUBLISHED: 17:00 26 October 2018

Archant

Jonathan Eldridge is the co-founder of Fossil Free Newham, an environmental action group which is lobbying to stop Newham Council investing in fossil fuels.

What’s your connection with the borough?

I was born in Newham and have lived here all my life.

My mum was also born here and my grandmother remembers watching the soldiers file off to war.

Her father (my great-grandfather) owned a cobblers shop in High Street North.

What’s the best thing about working or living in the borough?

The sheer plurality of culture.

What one thing would you change?

There should be more social housing.

Use three words to describe the area.

Diverse, chaotic, proud.

Who is the most inspiring person you have ever met?

In terms if people from Newham, both my parents are pretty inspiring people.

I find them inspiring because they constantly devote themselves to others.

What new law would you introduce if you were the prime minister?

There are a lot to choose from.

I’d want to redress inequality and hand more power back to local authorities, but firstly I think I would introduce a law which punishes corporate polluters, which is a tax which takes account of the damage companies do to the environment.

If you are an individual and you flytip you get a fine, so why do large organisations often escape this kind of thing?

If you were the editor of this paper, what issues in the borough would you focus on?

I would focus on the environment, young people and their collective future.

I would also focus on art and music, cuts to public services and the effect these cuts have had on the borough.

To find out more about Fossil Free Newham, visit the Facebook page, facebook.com/FossilFreeNewham. To sign the petition urging Newham to divest from fossil fuel investments, visit campaigns.gofossilfree.org/petitions/divest-newham-from-fossil-fuels.

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