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9 Years to Zero — The Inauguration and Climate News

Wednesday marked the dramatic changing of the political guard in Washington D.C. with the swearing in of Joseph Biden as the 46th President of the United States Kamala Harris as the first woman and first Black and South Asian Vice President. 

In his inauguration speech, President Biden pledged to address the multiple crises facing the United States. Referencing the “cry for survival from the planet itself” and calling for unity and action, Biden declared “we will press forward with speed and urgency, for we have much to do in this winter of peril and possibility. Much to repair. Much to restore. Much to heal. Much to build. And much to gain.” 

Indeed, the list of priorities is lengthy, and we are heartened to see that the Office of the President recognizes the climate emergency on the White House website, listing action on climate as the second priority after addressing the COVID-19 pandemic. Huge thanks to organizers across the country who have maintained a call for the acknowledgement of the climate emergency and the Climate Mobilization it demands. 

President Biden has pledged to restore hundreds of environmental regulations rolled back under the Trump Administration. One of the first executive actions he signed was to rejoin the Paris Agreement. On his first day in office President Biden also revoked the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline.

While critical, these pledges to act will not be enough. TCM has joined a coalition of environmental and climate justice groups calling for the Biden Administration to initiate a national Climate Mobilization to #BuildBackFossilFree. Key demands include Biden declaring a climate emergency under the National Emergencies Act and establishing a federal Office of Climate Mobilization. You can show your support by signing the #BuildBackFossilFree petition here

Climate Emergency Movement

To date, organizers have achieved 1,874 declarations of climate emergency within 33 countries and the European Union. 12.2% of the global population now lives within a jurisdiction that has declared a climate emergency. 

In the United States, climate emergency declaration campaigns are operating in at least 24 states and Washington, D.C., including Iowa, Michigan, North and South Carolina, Colorado, Ohio, Florida, Minnesota, North Dakota, Virginia, and Idaho. 

Climate News

Despite the cooling impacts of this year’s la niña weather pattern, NASA has named 2020 the hottest year on record. According to The Guardian “The world’s seven hottest years on record have now all occurred since 2014, with the 10 warmest all taking place in the last 15 years. There have now been 44 consecutive years where global temperatures have been above the 20th-century average.” There is no doubt; we are in an accelerating climate emergency.

Researchers have found that Brazilian forests are transitioning from carbon sinks to carbon sources, as climate scientists have been predicting for several years. Luckily, the problem is not unsolvable, as long as major land management changes are made. Such changes will require a Climate Mobilization that prioritizes addressing the climate emergency over private profits in Brazil. Such efforts are already being led by the incredible land defenders fighting to save these biomes.

In good news, engineers are finding innovative ways to address the looming wind turbine blade waste crisis by converting the retired turbines into bridges. If it is successful, groups like The Re-Wind team hope to test other creative recycling projects, such as transforming blades into affordable housing. 

Thank you for your support

Thanks to all who donated to The Climate Mobilization and Climate Mobilization Project during our 2020 end of year fundraising campaign. Your help is keeping us going during this challenging time and making it possible for us to grow the U.S. Climate Emergency Movement to promote comprehensive, cutting edge, justice-based local climate policies that will continue to embolden federal climate action. If you haven’t had a chance to give yet, you can do so here. This movement will take all of us — thanks for your support!

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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.