Oakland, CA Declares Climate Emergency

Last night, the city of Oakland, California followed Berkeley and Richmond, becoming the third California city to declare a Climate Emergency, voting unanimously to pass a “Resolution Endorsing the Declaration of a Climate Emergency and Requesting Regional Collaboration on an Immediate Just Transition and Emergency Mobilization Effort to Restore a Safe Climate.”

Last night, the city of Oakland, California followed Berkeley and Richmond, becoming the third California city to declare a Climate Emergency, voting unanimously to pass a “Resolution Endorsing the Declaration of a Climate Emergency and Requesting Regional Collaboration on an Immediate Just Transition and Emergency Mobilization Effort to Restore a Safe Climate.”

Oakland’s vote marks growing regional momentum and a movement of cities to treat global warming as the emergency it is. Oakland joins Berkeley and Richmond in launching an emergency-speed Climate Mobilization and Just Transition effort.

This means that the City will:

● Rapidly reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and seek to reach zero net emissions at emergency speed

● Create plans to protect residents, especially frontline communities,  from worsening climate disasters, and

● Work with local cities, counties and public agencies around the San Francisco Bay Area to bring them into a rapid Just Transition mobilization as well.

The City of Los Angeles is also gearing up for an equitable emergency response to global warming as it considers a motion from LA Councilmember Paul Koretz to create a Climate Emergency Mobilization Department. As Councilmember Koretz wrote in his letter to Oakland City Councilmembers yesterday, “The UN IPCC Report from earlier this month confirms what we have already known: we need to stop messing around with our greenhouse gas emissions immediately or we will face a climate catastrophe, the likes of whose impacts we are already feeling. Severe climate disruption is not happening to our children and grandchildren, it is happening to us right here in California, and around the world in real time. This is an emergency like nothing humankind has ever faced before, and we must be up to the task if civilization is to survive.”

Hoboken, New Jersey and Montgomery County, Maryland have also passed similar Climate Emergency Declarations.

Oakland’s Resolution combines the need to stop climate change in its tracks with a commitment to social justice, calling for a rapid, Just Transition from an extractive, destructive and racist economy towards equitable, regenerative and local living economies that uphold human rights and the Earth’s life support systems.

Passing Climate Emergency Declarations is a new and growing strategy for the climate movement, and an effective way for cities to act while the Federal government is motivated by fossil-fuel-funded denial. Notes Margaret Klein Salamon, director of The Climate Mobilization: “The growing emergency climate movement calls for an all-hands-on-deck climate mobilization to eliminate emissions as quickly as possible, in ten years or less, through a World War II-scale economic mobilization.”

As Oakland Climate Action Coalition (OCAC) Coordinator Colin Cook-Miller said, “If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. In this time we must go both fast and far, together. Our movement for a rapid Just Transition mobilization must be coordinated, strategic and unified, with leadership from the most-impacted frontline communities who are at the forefront of change.”

The OCAC led the effort to pass the Resolution in Oakland, with support from The Climate Mobilization. 42 local & national organizations and coalitions signed on to the OCAC’s letter of support calling on Councilmembers to pass the “Climate Emergency Declaration & Just Transition Resolution” without delay.

Incoming Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has also called on the United States to treat the climate crisis as it did WWII. What is more, the Extinction Rebellion launched in London today (10/31). This campaign of escalating civil disobedience — backed by more than 100 prominent climate scientists, elected officials and intellectuals– calls for the UK to eliminate emissions by 2025 and remove excess greenhouse gases from the atmosphere through a WWII-scale climate mobilization.

Congratulations to the City of Oakland on this critical vote to lead the State of California, the United States and the world toward zero emissions at emergency speed!

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Kristen Cashmore

Senior Director
Kristen brings more than 25 years of social justice advocacy to Climate Mobilization. Her previous positions at human rights, public health, environmental justice, and clean energy organizations inform her work with the variety of stakeholders she is engaging with to bring an accelerated response to the climate emergency. Kristen earned a BA in Peace and Conflict Studies from UC Berkeley, where she was a teaching assistant in the Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management.

Malik Russell

Communications Director

Malik leads Climate Mobilization’s press and communications strategy. He formerly served as Communications Director for the NAACP. He is a journalist, author, community-based educator, and former lecturer in the Department of Strategic Communications at Morgan State University. The former editor of the Washington Afro-American newspaper, he has worked as a journalist in the Black Press for over two decades.He has a BA in American history from Brandeis University and earned a Master of Public Administration degree from Baruch College in New York, where he was selected as a National Urban Fellow.

Ezra Silk

Deputy Director

Ezra is co-founder of The Climate Mobilization and Climate Mobilization Project. He authored The Climate Mobilization’s Victory Plan, an influential exploration of how the federal government can organize and implement a mobilization to save civilization from the Climate Emergency and ecological crisis. This document directly shaped the demands of the Extinction Rebellion movement and the Green New Deal framework. Ezra was also a lead author of the climate emergency declaration resolution introduced in Congress in July 2019. A former newspaper reporter, Ezra has a BA in history from Wesleyan University.

Matt Renner

Executive Director of The Climate Mobilization

Matt has worked as a nonprofit executive in clean energy, climate policy, and journalism for over a decade, focusing on the near-term social and economic impacts of climate change. He leads organizational expansion and works closely with the communications and organizing teams. Matt earned a BA in political science from UC Berkeley, where he was deeply inspired by the work of Professor George Lakoff.

Laura Berry

Research & Policy Director

Laura brings over a decade of experience to Climate Mobilization in climate advocacy, organizing, research, and policy. She has worked on climate, environmental, and sustainability issues from local to global scales with organizations including the Stockholm Environment Institute, the National Caucus of Environmental Legislators, and 350.org. She is passionate about deepening democratic engagement in response to the Climate Emergency. Laura has a BA in human ecology from College of the Atlantic and an MSc in global environment, politics, and society from the University of Edinburgh.

Rebecca Harris

Organizing Director

Rebecca leads Climate Mobilization organizing efforts. Along with a history of social movement organizing, Rebecca he has worked as a journalist covering equity in Chicago public schools. Most recently, Rebecca worked as Development and Communications Manager at Latino Union of Chicago, an immigrants’ and workers’ rights organization. She is a 2017 graduate of the Reframe Mentorship in strategic communications and a 2019 participant in the Anne Braden Organizer Training Program.

Marina Mails

Operations and Community Manager
Marina manages operations and volunteers for both The Climate Mobilization and Climate Mobilization Project. She brings broad experience working in non-profit organizations, health care settings, and running her own private counseling practice. Before joining Climate Mobilization, Marina maintained a practice focusing exclusively on climate-related emotional coping, helping people make bold choices for lifestyle and professional change in response to the Climate Emergency. She has a bachelor’s degree in political science and Spanish from Wake Forest University and a Masters in Counseling from UNC Greensboro.

Sydney Ghazarian

Digital Organizer
Sydney leads digital strategy for The Climate Mobilization and Climate Mobilization project. She is also a founder of National Democratic Socialists of America Ecosocialist Working Group and worked to establish climate as a primary focus of the American Left. Sydney has previously worked in journalism and in academic research. Sydney received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of California San Diego.

Cris Lagunas

Strategy Director

Cris is helping to grow the Climate Emergency Movement by supporting creative campaigns and extending the reach of the movement’s message. Cris is a co-founder of the National Immigrant Youth Alliance, an organization dedicated to using direct action tactics to expose, challenge and dismantle the immigration detention system.Cris got his start in organizing when he was 15 years old, getting involved in a local group of fellow undocumented youth.

Margaret Klein Salamon, PhD

Founder and Board President

Margaret is the founder of The Climate Mobilization (TCM) and Climate Mobilization Project (CMP) and helped catalyze a worldwide climate emergency movement through her work with both organizations. Margaret now serves as Climate Awakening Program Director. She is the author of Facing the Climate Emergency: How to Transform Yourself with Climate Truth (New Society Publishers, April 2020) and several influential essays. She is also a member of the Climate Emergency Fund’s Advisory Board. Margaret earned her PhD in clinical psychology from Adelphi University and a BA in social anthropology from Harvard. Though she loved being a therapist, Margaret felt called to apply her psychological and anthropological knowledge to solving the Climate Emergency.

AriDy Nox

Organizational Development and Engagement Manager
AriDy brings creativity, enthusiasm and a tremendous capacity for organization to her/their role, assisting the executive director with travel, communication and fundraising. AriDy Nox is a multi-disciplinary black femme storyteller and social activist. They have served as a national representative for The Young Women of Color Leadership Council, the Millennials of Color Leadership Bureau, and held writing positions with Advocates for Youth and RH Reality Check. She has worked as an administrative and executive assistant for a myriad of organizations including the Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program at Tisch School of the Performing Arts at NYU, the Youth Engagement Fund and the Community Resource Exchange.