exc-5d0d18846a03dd0001b21d1b

10 Years to Zero: Climate Emergency comes to Congress, Canada blows it

Climate Emergency comes to the U.S. Congress and Canada blows it

 Click the image above to sign the petition and automatically send a letter to your Members of Congress.
Click the image above to sign the petition and automatically send a letter to your Members of Congress.

Congressional Climate Emergency Campaign Launches in the United States

A growing coalition of climate justice, faith, labor, and environmental groups have launched a campaign calling on Congress to declare Climate Emergency in the United States. An online tool available at ClimateEmergency.US automatically sends a customizable letter to the signer’s Members of Congress urging they pass a declaration recognizing Climate and Ecological Emergency and initiate a democratic and just mobilization “larger than that of World War II” to reverse global warming.

Sign the petition and view the growing list of endorser here.
If your organization wants to sign onto the effort,
please visit this page

The Hill newspaper, a key publication in Washington D.C., published a column today by our Founder and Executive Director Margaret Klein Salamon explaining the campaign and its goals. Read “Moving into Emergency Mode on Climate” at The Hill. 

Canada fails on Climate Emergency

The grassroots Climate Emergency Movement in Canada has been a global leader, with 404 governments adopting climate emergency resolutions at the local level. However, shortly after its House of Commons took up and passed a weak national climate emergency declaration, they failed to make it count. 

The non-binding resolution was tied to an old, gradualist timeline rather than moving at emergency speed. It recommitted Canada to their commitments under the Paris climate accord without even on additional goal or legally binding commitment. Then, two days later, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government approved the expansion of the Trans Mountain Pipeline project, which is intended to vastly accelerate the extraction of Alberta tar sands oil, nearly tripling the capacity of the existing pipeline and locking in billions of dollars in investment in fossil fuel infrastructure and untold megatons of carbon emissions from the extracted oil. 

The hypocrisy of these two parliamentary decisions demonstrates the gap between the will of the people and the power of the fossil fuel industry in the industrialized world. Declarations of Climate Emergency are a start — these declarations can unify the shared commitment of the movement, clarify the truth of the situation, and put lawmakers on record. But they are not enough — only a sustained global movement focused on winning power, launching a mobilization, and bringing the fossil fuel industry to heel, will give us a chance at survival.

The Trans Mountain Pipeline will negatively impact the entire globe, but it most seriously threatens the land rights of numerous Indigenous communities in its path. After the pipeline announcement, the Union of British Columbia Indian Chiefs (UBCIC) reaffirmed the commitment of leaders from across British Columbia, stating that they “remain staunchly opposed” to pipeline expansion, and “have vowed that it will never get built.” You can support the UBCIC’s efforts here. 

Climate Truth is Spreading

On June 14, Pope Francis declared a global climate emergency and made a plea directly to oil executives to hear “the increasingly desperate cries of the earth and its poor.” The Pope is the latest among a chorus of voices that is increasingly overrunning the oil and gas industry’s disinformation campaigns, bringing to the public, in a way never before, the true scope and urgency of the climate crisis. 

Early this month, Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz called for a World War II-scale mobilization to fight the climate crisis as the existential threat it is. And Greta Thunberg continues to sound a clarion call on behalf of her generation and the future they are fighting for; she and other youth activists have called for a general strike on September 20 in support of climate action. A week ago, the Breakthrough National Centre for Climate Restoration (our close advisors and allies) published a policy paper outlining the perils we face if the world’s governments fail to keep global heating from exceeding the Paris Agreement’s best limit of 1.5°C. The horrific risks it describes including major famines, resource wars, massive migrations, and widespread, severe degradation of agriculture and habitable land). The likelihood of such outcomes has started getting much-needed attention in the mainstream U.S. media, among other places. 

The Guardian, one of the U.K.’s major newspapers, also took an important step this month toward recognizing the oncoming climate catastrophe for what it is. The newspaper released a statement that it would use the terms “climate emergency, crisis, or breakdown” rather than “climate change” to describe the interrelated, cascading effects of increased global temperatures and their effects on human and non-human life. Noticias Telemundo, the news division of the second largest Spanish-language broadcasting company in the U.S., will also be using “climate emergency” to describe the situation going forward.  

Climate Emergency Declarations Continue to Accelerate

The Industrial Revolution and its dependence on carbon began in the United Kingdom, and is culminating now in the accelerating climate crisis. It is appropriate, then, that people and their local governments in the U.K.  are now taking responsibility for these emissions by recognizing and committing to confront the climate emergency. At current count, more than half of the U.K. populace lives in a city or region whose local government has declared a climate emergency. This milestone follows a national declaration of Climate and Environmental Emergency by the U.K. government.

Outside the U.K., the climate emergency campaign continues to accelerate. The Irish Parliament declared a climate emergency, as did the government of Catalonia and the first municipal governments in Belgium (Koekelberg), the Czech Republic (Prague 7th District), and France (Mulhouse City Council). Close to half of New Zealanders now live in cities that have declared a climate emergency — all of which have declared in the last month. As of May 1, no city in Italy had declared a climate emergency; now more than a dozen have, including Naples and Milan, representing close to 15% of the country’s population. Germany has similarly seen 14 cities declare an emergency in the last six weeks. And new cities in Australia, Switzerland, and the United States are declaring climate emergency. 

May also saw a major setback, as a conservative coalition tied closely to coal interests won federal elections in Australia, where the climate emergency — and its increasingly visible, deadly consequences in that country — was a central issue.

For updated data on local Climate Emergency declarations, please visit the International Climate Emergency Forum public database

Leading the Public into Emergency Mode

Recognition that we are deep into a climate emergency is accelerating tremendously. The Climate Mobilization’s Leading the Public into Emergency Mode (published 2016, and updated this month) describes the transformative power of telling the truth about the climate emergency and the social movement ecosystem this can invigorate, creating the necessary rapid shift in consciousness needed to achieve a WWII-scale climate mobilization. 

Read and share the updated Leading the Public Into Emergency Mode: Introducing the Climate Emergency Movement.

Thank you for your commitment to this work and for helping to make it possible. We are powered by the donations of individuals who want to make a Climate Mobilization real. Please consider joining with us by making a recurring contribution.

Share this post

Scroll to Top

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.