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10 Years to Zero: A Newsletter of the Climate Emergency Movement

Welcome to the Climate Emergency Movement Newsletter. In this regular update, we’ll highlight successful direct action by climate activists who are building local momentum for a global transformation.  We hope you’ll read more about these amazing activists’ work and join where you can and however you can.

In the past year, thousands of individuals have recognized the Climate Emergency for what it is and have thrown themselves into organizing their communities, amplifying the voices of scientists, and demanding action from their elected officials. The Climate Mobilization is one of these groups; we are focusing on building a network of cities that have begun to take action.

But thankfully, we are far from alone! The Climate Emergency message and the Climate Mobilization solution have been taken up by groups all over the world, and here at home. We are thrilled.

Which is why we’re starting the Climate Emergency Movement Newsletter.  In this regular update, we’ll highlight successful direct action by climate activists who are building local momentum for a global transformation.  We hope you’ll read more about these amazing activists’ work and join where you can and however you can. These efforts aim to not just save lives, but to also to transform life on this planet so all species can be supported by a thriving biosphere and a culture rooted in justice and sustainability.

New Local Governments Declare Climate Emergency

  • The City Council of Vancouver, Canada, voted unanimously to declare a Climate Emergency on January 17.

  • The Regional Council of Halifax, Canada, declared a Climate Emergency on January 29.

  • In the U.S., the City Council of Hayward, California unanimously declared a Climate Emergency on January 15. Santa Cruz County declared on January 29, joining the city by the same name on the growing list of declared California governments. The City Council of New Britain, Connecticut declared on January 23.

  • Gawler, Australia declared a Climate Emergency on January 22.

  • As of this writing, more than 12 million people living in the UK live in a city that has declared a Climate Emergency.

    • Cornwall, UK declared a Climate Emergency and committed to seeking carbon neutrality by 2030 on January 22.

    • Lambeth, UK, a borough of London, declared a Climate Emergency and a target date for carbon neutrality of 2030 on January 23.

    • Councils in Bradford, Kirklees, Leicester City, Oxford, Milton Keynes, Powys, and Scarborough, UK, also declared a Climate Emergency in January.

An interactive map and a full list of local governments that have declared a Climate Emergency, along with links to each declaration, can be found here.

Latest Emergency Actions

 (Image: Extinction Rebellion NYC)
(Image: Extinction Rebellion NYC)

Extinction Rebellion comes to New York City

You may know Extinction Rebellion (XR) as the group that stood in front of traffic and shut down London in a successful effort to convince the London Mayor and City Assembly to declare a Climate Emergency.  On January 26, nine protesters were arrested at a mass mobilization at Rockefeller Center, a major action in XR’s growing national escalation in the U.S. Read more about XR coming to New York in this great article from The Intercept.  

Minnesota Can’t Wait

In Minnesota,  MN Can’t Wait, a youth-led, state-level effort to demand a Green New Deal met with newly inaugurated Governor Tim Walz to demand bold action on climate change in that state.

Sunrise Movement and the Presidential Primaries

On November 13, 2018, dozens of young people, including newly elected Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC), engaged in a sit-in outside soon-to-be-Speaker of the House of Representatives Pelosi’s office, where 51 were arrested. The protest brought mainstream attention to the Green New Deal and shifted the national conversation in the United States.

The protesters were part of the Sunrise Movement, a network of young people and allies who engage in direct action, political advocacy, and training to stop climate change and create millions of good-paying jobs in the process. The Sunrise Movement uses a hub-based organizing model and encourages participants to take initiative—one of the group’s principles is that any three people, working as a group, can take action in the name of Sunrise.

 (Image: Sarah Silbiger/The New York Times via  CommonDreams )
(Image: Sarah Silbiger/The New York Times via CommonDreams )

Since the November protest, more than 40 Democratic representatives have signed on in support of a Select Committee on a Green New Deal.  Members of the Sunrise Movement continue to stage local direct actions, including displaying a giant banner and signs at the Sen. Kamala Harris’s first major rally to kick off her bid for the Democratic Party nomination for president in 2020. The banner demanded she endorse a Green New Deal—which Sen. Harris then did the next day.

The Sunrise Movement and Justice Democrats—the group coordinating with AOC and likeminded legislators and candidates—have fully signed onto The Climate Mobilization’s vision for rapid, emergency transformation.

School Strike for Climate Action

The School Strike 4 Climate movement, pioneered by the indomitable 16-year old Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg (pictured below at the recent UN Climate Summit), is growing exponentially! Thousands of students in Belgium, Switzerland, and Germany have  participated in the global School Strike for Climate movement, gathering during school days once a month to demand politicians address the catastrophic threat to their future.  

 (Image:  Hanna Franzen/EPA )
(Image: Hanna Franzen/EPA )

In Australia, young people are building toward a global climate strike on March 15.  Students throughout Australia (and around the world) will walk out of class in support of three demands: First, stop the construction of a giant coal mine by Adani in Queensland that would produce 10 million tons (rising to 27.5 million tons) of coal per year.  Second, stop all new coal and gas permits.  Third, transition to 100% renewable energy by 2030.  Groups in at least 25 cities throughout Australia plan to participate.

 (Image:  School Strike 4 Climate AU )
(Image: School Strike 4 Climate AU )

The March 15 school strike will be building on past efforts, including a strike on November 30, 2018, and protests in multiple cities on December 8, when students and first nations people led more than 15,000 Australians through city streets to oppose the start of construction on the Adani coal mine.

 (Image:  Australian Youth Climate Coalition )
(Image: Australian Youth Climate Coalition )

Thank you for reading! Please share this news and inspire your friends and family to join the Climate Emergency Movement.

Send tips on Climate Emergency Movement news to: TCM@theclimatemobilization.org.

Visit ClimateMobilization.org to get involved. Link up with us on Facebook and Twitter.

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Alexia Leclerq

Network Coach

Alexia (she/they) is an environmental justice organizer based in Austin, TX. They graduated summa cum laude from NYU (’20), where they self-designed a major titled “The Politics and Economics of Inequality.” Their research focuses on political ecology, environmental justice, AAPI communities, inequality, postcolonialism. As an organizer and researcher they have spent the past 5 years working on various issues from preserving the Colorado River, water rights, fighting land use policy and zoning that enforces race-based discrimination, conducting ethnographic research on climate health, to organizing mutual aid, youth programming, and shaping national legislation alongside members of the Environmental Justice Leadership Forum and the Environmental Justice Health Alliance; today Alexia continues to work as an organizer with PODER, a grassroots EJ org. Alexia is also the co-founder of Start: Empowerment, a BIPOC led social and environmental justice education non-profit working with youth, educators, activists, and community members to implement justice-focused education and programming in schools and community spaces. S:E curriculum and programming has reached over 2,000 students, been recognized by the NYC Department of Education, and taught in universities. In 2021, their work was recognized by the prestigious Brower Youth Award.

Emmett Hopkins

National Organizer

Emmett organizes local-scale mobilization for the Sonoma County campaign, while supporting Climate Mobilization’s organizing efforts around the country. He brings over a decade of experience collaborating with diverse stakeholders to build community food systems, ensure equitable access to public lands, and mobilize resources towards a just transition to an amazing zero carbon future. He graduated from Stanford with a BS in Earth Systems and MS in Urban Planning & Sustainable Design. Emmett enjoys growing food and cultivating relationships, riding bikes and buses, and reimagining our communities to better serve all the people living in them.

Suha Dabbouseh

National Organizer

National Organizer Suha Dabbouseh leads national strategy for The Climate Mobilization. They are originally from Chicago but have lived, organized and rebel-roused in seven states and 11 cities. Suha received their law degree from CUNY-School of Law where they focused on social justice lawyering representing detainees at Guantanamo Bay. While practicing law, Suha had worked to advocate on behalf of domestic violence survivors, transgender clients and fighting employment discrimination. Their passion is building people power and organizing to dismantle structural inequities.

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.

Mariyah Jahangiri

Network Organizer

Mariyah leads Climate Mobilization Network’s recruitment, coordination, and organizing support. She has organized across movements and is passionate about addressing white supremacy in the mainstream climate movement and building capacity for youth-led, BIPOC-led intersectional climate movements. She has been inspired by her experiences organizing to defund the police in Boston, supporting mutual aid and food sovereignty projects in Iowa, Atlanta, and Puerto Rico, and working on a Make Big Polluters Pay campaign. Mariyah worked as an organizer with the Bernie Sanders 2020 campaign and Planned Parenthood PAC. She graduated from Grinnell College with a Sociology degree.

Rebecca Harris

Co-Leader and Director of Organizing

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

Co-Leader and Director of Operations
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.

Meghann Beer

Co-Leader and Director of Resource Mobilization and Strategy

Meghann brings more than 20 years of nonprofit management and fundraising experience to The Climate Mobilization and Climate Mobilization Project. For over a decade Meghann has worked as a nonprofit consultant helping organizations expand their capacity, secure revenue, develop successful strategies, and effectively evaluate their programs, enabling them to create greater positive change in the world. She has also worked as an executive director, designed and facilitated international service learning experiences, and taught university courses in fundraising and nonprofit management. Meghann earned a MPA in Nonprofit Management and Comparative and International Affairs from The School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University, in Bloomington, IN and a BA in Art History and American Studies from Tufts University in Boston, MA.

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.

Zack Burley

Policy Associate

Zack provides policy support for the Climate Mobilization team, and brings a versatile set of policy skills and experiences in labor organizing, journalism, legislative politics, and legal practice to the climate emergency movement. Zack earned a JD from Denver University Sturm College of Law, is a founding organizer of the Political Workers Guild of Colorado, and formerly served as a legislative aide in the Colorado General Assembly.

AriDy Nox

Co-Leader and Director of Narrative Strategy

 AriDy Nox is a multi-disciplinary black femme storyteller and social activist with a variety of forward-thinking creative works under her/their belt. They create out of the vehement belief that creating a future in which marginalized peoples are free requires a radical imagination. Their tales are offerings intended to function as small parts of an ancient, expansive, awe-inspiring tradition of world-shaping, created by and for black femmes. They have over a decade of experience as a young social activist and organizer, within reproductive justice and racial justice frameworks with organizations like the Young Women of Color Leadership Council with Advocates for Youth, the Toni Cade Bamabara Collective at Spelman College and Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated. They bring creativity, enthusiasm and a tremendous capacity for organization to her/their role and deep belief that times of apocalypse are opportunities for rebirth. We need first imagine the world we want in order to create it.