March31st-CE-graph

News from The Climate Mobilization and the Climate Emergency Movement

The world has been utterly transformed as the COVID-19 coronavirus has upended nearly every aspect of our lives and brought suffering to so many. The dizzying speed of news and information continues, with the number of confirmed US cases jumping exponentially each day. Read on to learn how the Climate Emergency Movement is facing the challenge of global pandemic and building a movement to gather strength in a time of crisis.

Climate Emergency Movement updates — by the numbers

The Climate Emergency Movement continues to grow, approaching 1,500 declarations world wide. 829,280,700 people, or more than 10% of global population live in under municipal or national governments that have declared a Climate Emergency.

Some climate campaigners are helping during the COVID-19 crisis by creating mutual aid networks and supporting the vulnerable in their communities, while simultaneously drawing the connections between COVID-19 and the fight to restore a safe climate. Check out the COVID Victory Gardens project helping to provide communities with healthy, fresh food throughout the pandemic, hosted by the Cooperative Gardens Coalition and Experiment Farm Network.

Notably, despite the COVID-19 crisis, cities and prefectures across Japan have been joining the movement and passing Climate Emergency declarations during the month of March. Most recently, the city of Osaka passed the 24th Climate Emergency declaration in Japan, bringing the total national population living in an area with an established climate emergency declaration to over 10%. 

Local campaign spotlight: Ann Arbor, Michigan

The Ann Arbor TCM chapter and organizers from A2Zero won a YUGE victory this week with the release of the city’s A2Zero Carbon Neutrality Strategy, a seven-phase, city-wide strategic plan to reach carbon neutrality by 2030. The plan, which would commit $1 billion over 10 years toward renewable energy, energy efficiency, sustainable transportation and resource reduction, as well as climate adaptation and resilience efforts. This plan builds directly on commitments made in Ann Arbor’s Climate Emergency Declaration, passed In November 2019 by the Ann Arbor City Council after being introduced by Climate Emergency organizers calling for the city to commit to achieving zero greenhouse emissions across the community. 

This success and the continued organizing and advocacy of the A2Zero coalition will set an example for local campaigns to point to, as they work to bring their local governments into emergency mode! 

The Climate Mobilization in the News

An op-ed by The Climate Mobilization’s founding director, Margaret Klein Salamon was published in The Hill this week, drawing parallels between our society-wide response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the need to shift into “emergency mode” on climate disruption: “We’re in ‘emergency mode’ for coronavirus – we can do the same thing for climate.”

Margaret is also quoted in this long read from The Guardian: “‘We’ve been trying for years to get people out of normal mode and into emergency mode,’ said Margaret Klein Salamon, a former psychologist who now heads the advocacy group The Climate Mobilization. ‘What is possible politically is fundamentally different when lots of people get into emergency mode – when they fundamentally accept that there’s danger, and that if we want to be safe we need to do everything we can. And it’s been interesting to see that theory validated by the response to the coronavirus. Now the challenge is to keep emergency mode activated about climate, where the dangers are orders of magnitude greater. We can’t think we’re going to go ‘back to normal’, because things weren’t normal.’”

Rollbacks and Power Grabs

In response to industry pressure during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Trump administration has pursued aggressive rollbacks of environmental and scientific protections overseen by the EPA and the Department of the Interior — including air quality and emissions standards on toxic pollutants directly linked to respiratory health issues. 

This week, Emily Atkin’s HEATED newsletter also published a new investigation showing that in the midst of Congressional negotiations around a national COVID-19 stimulus legislation, Kentucky, South Dakota, and West Virginia state legislatures passed so-called “critical infrastructure” bills that place criminal penalties on activists who target oil and gas pipelines.

Earth Day Live

Climate Mobilization Project is a Movement Partner of the U.S. Climate Strike and Earth Day Live, April 22-24. This three-day live event will gather people from their homes around the world for virtual town halls, speakers, entertainment, and voter registration. Mark your calendar today to share the link to the livestream on your Facebook or Twitter page, and text it to all your friends. Stay tuned for schedule details, and read more about Earth Day Live in the New York Times.

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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.