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TCM Update: Extreme Weather, Oil Money and the Movement to Build a Better World

In this Update: More jurisdictions declare Climate Emergency, Margaret Klein Salamon on Rich Roll Podcast, oil and gas fuel Trump, indigenous tribes in Alaska take action to protect Tongass National Forest, and more.

Climate Emergency Movement

To date the global population living in jurisdictions that have declared a Climate Emergency is 831,690,444 people. In the U.S. that number is 35,372,017 people, or 10.77% of the country’s population. The most recent declaration of Climate Emergency in the United States came from Mendocino County, California on July 21st, 2020.

Facing the Climate Emergency

In honour of Baby Beluga turning 40, legendary childrens’ entertainer Raffi is supporting climate action to protect our children’s future. He’ll be giving away 10 copies of his favorite new climate book, Facing the Climate Emergency by psychologist and TCM founder Margaret Klein Salamon, plus a special opportunity for you and your family to meet Raffi! via Zoom! You can enter the contest from now until August 5th.

Margaret recently appeared on The Rich Roll Podcast to talk about solving the Climate Emergency, growing the movement, and the book! (All proceeds from Facing the Climate Emergency directly benefit Climate Mobilization Project)

Listen to Margaret Klein Salamon on the Rich Roll Podcast

Extreme weather

Time is running short. This summer is already providing terrible and stunning evidence of accelerating climate breakdown. 

Tropical Storm Isaias is making its way up the east coast, leaving flooding and property damage in its wake as it churns through unusually warm waters

The number of fires burning in the Amazon rainforest have increased 28% above last July, worrying experts after a record setting fire season there last year and posing dire risks for the people and wildlife of the most biodiverse region on Earth, and our planet’s overall climate stability. 

Record-shattering high temperatures in the Arctic are continuing this summer, with large parts of Siberia currently on fire. For some perspective on the cascading changes in the Arctic, watch this stunning time lapse showing 35 years of climate impact in 125 seconds

Click to watch this stunning time lapse showing 35 years of climate impact in 125 seconds

In the wake of a recent super-cyclone, Monsoon-related rains have caused widespread flooding in Bangladesh, with between a quarter and a third of the entire landmass currently underwater. 

The Apple Fire in Riverside and San Bernardino Counties in California has grown to over 20,000 acres, and was only 7% contained as of Monday evening.

The impact of these disasters is exacerbated by the pandemic and its economic fallout, underscoring the devastating human toll of the Climate Emergency across the world. We must mobilize all of our resources to transition away from dangerous fossil fuels toward a just, sustainable economy at emergency speed.


The oil and gas sector has given Trump $935,000 in campaign donations as of July 21, more than three times what they have given Democratic candidate Joe Biden, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. These reported donations do not include contributions to political action committees nor other hidden mechanisms for injecting oil money into the U.S. political process. Recent examples of unlawful bribery and influence by utility companies and their lackeys in Illinois and Ohio demonstrate the pervasive nature of the influence of big energy over decisions that directly impact our future. 

A landmark case in Ireland brought by environmental group Friends of the Irish Environment has led to the ruling stating that the Irish Government has a legal obligation to protect its citizens from the worst impacts of climate change. The law draws on previous acts passed by the legislature that have not been carried out and holds the Irish government accountable. Though the legal implications are unclear, organizers hope that this step increases pressure on lawmakers to take decisive action.

Movement and Organizing
Last week, nine native Alaska tribes filed a petition calling on the U.S. Department of Agriculture to halt the removal of protections for the Tongass National Forest, the country’s largest reserve of public woodlands, which the tribes say is vital to their livelihoods. The Trump Administration is seeking to open the old-growth forest for logging and has requested that the U.S. Forest Service, part of the USDA, lift the rule from the Tongass, a process that is in its final stages. A decision is expected later this summer. 

A new Gallup poll found that nearly two-thirds of Americans support the Black Lives Matter protests. Movement for Black Lives is rolling out Freedom Summer 2020 organizing campaign, an echo of the 1964 Freedom Summer voting rights drive that precipitated the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act. Learn about Freedom Summer organizing and support local mutual aid here.

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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 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.