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“On the day the Trump administration withdrew from the Paris climate agreement, the City of Portland and Multnomah County committed to a goal of meeting 100 percent of community energy needs with renewable power by 2050. … Wheeler and others noted, however, that the heavy lifting would come in implementing the plan.”    –The Oregonian, June 1, 2017

One year ago, you made that happen! We have no doubt that the strong push from our community helped our locally-elected officials do the right thing. Now 350PDX, with the community-of-color-led Portland Clean Energy Fund (PCEF) Coalition is working on the “heavy lifting”, and again, we need your support!

Will you give to our mid-year funding drive to support the crucial work of 350PDX?

PCEF is a ballot initiative endorsed by over 150 community organizations to put money behind the city’s clean energy goals, specifically for low-income and marginalized communities. This is what climate justice looks like, and with your help, we will get it passed in November!

This work is so important, the 350PDX board will match the first $7500 raised by July 31!

While PCEF is a top priority this year, our teams are taking climate action on multiple fronts:

  • Fossil Fuel Resistance won’t rest until the Jordan Cove gas terminal is stopped for good;
  • Divest/Reinvest is calling out Chase bank for their role in funding Jordan Cove;
  • State Legislature team is gearing up to get the Clean Energy jobs bill passed in Salem;
  • Arts, Communications, & Neighborhood teams do all this & more, in fun, creative ways!

On top of all this, we will soon be launching a search for new staff leadership. While this is a challenging time, 350PDX has become a powerful voice for climate justice in Portland, and we are still charging full steam ahead! (See other side.) Can we count on your tax-deductible donation today? Please consider being a sustaining donor (or increase your monthly gift) — regular donations help us stabilize our revenue stream for payroll and other fixed expenses.

Our fossil fuel infrastructure ban is being replicated in cities from Seattle to Baltimore,  and PCEF could be next. In fact, 350.org’s national 2018 strategic plan looks a lot like what we’re already doing here in Portland! That’s how important our work — and your support — is now.

THANK YOU for all you do! 350PDX was bigger than ever in 2017, and whether you attended an event, made a sign, or gave financial or moral support, you are a HUGE part of our success!

Motivated in solidarity,

Bernadette Rodgers, with the 350PDX Board & Staff

P.S. Remember, donations received by July 31 will be matched dollar-for-dollar. Please give today and help us reach our $7,500 goal!

The post Help Support us During our Summer Fundraising Appeal! appeared first on 350PDX.

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350PDX by Simran Kadam - 2d ago

We have three interns in the office this summer!! Simran, CJ, and Chris will be supporting our organizing capacity, preparing for the September 8th Rise for Climate Jobs and Justice day of action, and working on our summer fundraising appeal.

They’re all awesome and I hope you will join me in welcoming them to the team.

– Nicole, Community Organizer

                                   

                                            

Chris Palmer – Summer Intern

Hello. My name is Chris, a new intern at 350PDX. I arrived in Portland in February after living in Edinburgh, Scotland for the past 4 years, and in England before that where I was born and raised. I’ve been working on climate change in the UK for over 5 years, and moved to the US after meeting and marrying my American wife. Working on climate change in the US in 2018 is definitely a unique challenge… but I’ve found that out of adversity comes strength, and that strength is palpable in the hundreds of volunteers that make up 350PDX.

In Scotland I ran (and continue to remotely help run) a nonprofit that empowers millennials to take action on climate change, and hope to bring some of these ideas and practices to Portland. I am excited about the power of social change through community organization, by empowering real people to go beyond reducing their carbon footprint through their personal, professional and political spheres of influence. When you provide humans with an opportunity to solve issues, make connections, and enjoy themselves while doing it, I have learned that people shift from being stagnant to excitedly active about taking action on climate change. And after arriving in Portland it became obvious pretty quickly that 350PDX was where this was happening.

I have worked as a qualified and experienced sustainability advisor who helps businesses become more energy/water/waste efficient, and I’m a LEED Accredited Professional (BD+C). I have a Masters degree in Environmental Sustainability, and I also co-founded and ran TravelHUB, a tech startup aiming to help businesses to fly less.

Simran Kadam – Campaign and Community Organizing Intern 

Hi! I’m Simran, the new Campaign and Community Organizing Intern here at 350PDX. Though I’m only 17 years-old, I’m planning on dedicated my life to helping solve the climate crisis. I’ve  been in love with nature since I could remember, and has always felt a strong urge to protect it. My inner activist first came out in the 4th grade, when I started an environmental protection club at my elementary school. Consisting of my friends and parents, the group met once a week and pick up trash in my neighborhood. Although, it usually ending with my parents doing all the work and my friends and I playing tag on our neighbors yards. Since then I’ve been involved in student government and started an activism club at my high school. The club, Students for Change, is committed on bettering our local community through awareness and policy change, focusing on environmental and social injustice.

I first discovered 350PDX through a simple Google search. Wanting to discover how to take action in the climate epidemic, I clicked on 350PDX’s webpage and the rest was history. I quickly fell in love with the mission of 350PDX, and how in addition to combating the climate issue they simultaneous focused on helping those disproportionately affected by it. In my time at 350PDX I have already met so many incredible, inspiring individuals who reaffirm my belief that if we all work together and fight for what’s right, we will achieve a better future.

In my free time, I love to spend time at the library, kayak down the Tualatin river, and dance in my local performance company. Currently in the process of applying to colleges, I’m planning on majoring in environmental science in order to further my understanding of the challenges currently facing the planet. I will do activism work throughout my education, and I hope to encourage and inspire others to join in this movement.

CJ Hansen – Development Intern

At 21 years old and less than a year from graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies, I am passionate advocate for the environment and is looking forward to using any opportunities at his disposal to raise awareness for environmental justice and sustainability. I was born in Salem, Oregon, and spent much of my childhood enjoying the outdoors – hiking, fishing, camping, hunting – and as such I’ve developed a great respect and admiration for the natural state of our world, one which I hope to help maintain for generations to come.

I am a Development Intern at 350PDX, where I am excited to use what I’ve learned in school in the pursuit of climate justice. I feel as though the work being done here is vital to the wellbeing of our planet as a whole, and I anticipate much hard and good work to be done moving forward.

When I’m not busy with school, climate justice work, or bopping around our beautiful country, I like to spend my time writing and reading poetry, musing in history books and playing (if you could call it “playing”) guitar and other stringed instruments.

The post Meet Our New Summer Interns! appeared first on 350PDX.

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Please join us for our next meeting:

Tuesday, July 24, 7:00 – 7:30pm: gathering and socializing
Meeting, 7:30 – 9:00pm: Central Lutheran Church, 1821 NE 21
st Ave

The Capping Carbon Campaign continues to build on our past success. Our goal now is to pass the strongest possible legislation during the 2019 Legislative session – a Clean Energy Jobs bill that will:

  1. Cap greenhouse gases – achieve 80% reduction against 1990 levels by 2050,
  2. Make polluters pay (three major sectors: transportation, utilities, major manufacturers)
  3. Invest in communities most in need to speed transition to a clean energy future

We will continue to focus on ensuring that all Portland area legislators are climate champions and will organize meetings between constituents and their Representatives and Senators for this coming Fall.

In addition, we are focusing on two outlying areas for outreach to climate voters, people who want to see strong climate supporters in the Oregon Legislature. These areas are in Clackamas County and the Hood River area. We have a climate presentation targeted towards folks in these areas.

The Joint Committee on Carbon Reduction has meetings planned for the remainder of the year. This committee, chaired by Senate President Courtney and House Speaker Kotek is responsible to write the final bill that will be introduced early next year. Climate activists packed the hearing room at the Capitol Building in Salem for the first two meetings. We need to continue to do this for all future meetings. We want to be sure that this committee knows that we are committed to ensuring effective climate legislation. The next meeting is set for Tuesday, July 24th from 1 – 4pm at the Capitol Bldg (yes, this is the same day as our July meeting so make this your day to commit to the climate!) We will continue to have car-pools for these meetings. Put these future meetings of the Joint Committee on your calendar (all are in the Capitol Bldg in Salem):

August 28, 2018, 1:00-4:00 PM
September 24-26, 2018 (Legislative Days, day and time TBA)
November 8, 2018, 1:00-4:00 PM
December 12-14, 2018 (Legislative Days, day and time TBA)

Rand Schenck, Rick Brown, and Jane Stackhouse
Co-Leads

The post Update: Capping Carbon Campaign appeared first on 350PDX.

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Roxie in space

Hello, 350PDX! My name is Anissa (ah-knee-sa), and I am the new Justice-Based Transition and Equity Organizer at 350PDX. I use they/them/their pronouns, and have a small office chihuahua, Roxie, who is a bundle of love and cuddles.

It is with immense gratitude and humility that I accepted this role, and I look forward to meeting everyone as we work together to build an inclusive movement to pursue climate justice and eliminate environmental racism. What does 350PDX mean by these terms?

Well, we are talking about an environmental movement that centers frontline communities, or those most directly and deeply impacted by climate change. For example, one may think of Standing Rock and other indigenous groups who are fighting pipelines pumping natural gas or oil. One also can look to the example of Beyond Toxics, in addressing air pollution in Latín and immigrant communities.

Or one can look at the example in the Portland Clean Energy Fund, where our organization has been part of a coalition led by communities of color with support from us and other environmental organizations to provide clean energy solutions and job training to low-income communities and communities of color.

Part of my role is to support the Portland Clean Energy Fund, but I am also going to support additional organizing around a Justice-Based Transition. This means that I will be discussing and centering upcoming projects that address communities most directly impacted by environmental and climate injustice. Connected to this goal, I will also build partnerships and conduct outreach to low-income communities, communities of color, young people, LGBTQ+ people, and people who have visible and invisible disabilities.

The last part of my work will be growing our (currently) very small Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Work Team to support teams at 350PDX in their work through a climate justice lens. This is where you can support me, and together we can create trainings and workshops to further the goals of equity, inclusion, and climate justice throughout our teams.

We are actively inviting folks to join us! Interested volunteers can reach me at anissa@350pdx.org or 503-281-1485. We will be meeting bi-weekly, starting in August, and we are very excited to have additional perspectives at the table.

Thank you again!

The post Help me make 350PDX more inclusive! appeared first on 350PDX.

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350PDX by Simran Kadam - 5d ago

Our Climate Science Round-Ups are a compilation of recent news about climate science. In this edition, we pull articles from NPR, The Guardian, and The Washington Post about major crops losing nutrients, the devastating lasting effects of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, and global temperatures potentially doubling from predicted models.

As Carbon Dioxide Levels Rise, Major Crops are Losing Nutrients
NPR; July 19, 2018

“Plants need carbon dioxide to live, but its effects on them are complicated. As the level of carbon dioxide in the air continues to rise because of human activity, scientists are trying to pin down how the plants we eat are being affected. Mounting evidence suggests that many key plants lose nutritional value at higher CO2levels, and scientists are running experiments all over the world to try to tease out the effects.”

Racing to Save Florida’s Coral from Climate Change, Scientists turn to a Once-Unthinkable Strategy; ‘Assisted Evolution’
LA Times; July 9, 2018

“In a hurricane-proof lab miles down the Florida Keys, scientists coddle, the way a parent might, tiny pieces of coral from the moment they are spawned until they are just hearty enough to be separated into specimens equipped to survive in the wild. Then these dark-green fragments are put through misery, plunged into tanks mimicking the hotter, more acidic waters projected to one day overtake the tropical region. Many coral samples will die, but those that endure the hostile testing will be painstakingly transplanted back in the Atlantic.”

Record Heat Put Thousands of Californians in the Dark Friday. Scientists Predicted this from Climate Change
The Washington Post; July 9, 2018

“Temperatures shot up over 110 degrees in Southern California on Friday, obliterating all kinds of long-standing heat records, and the lights went out for tens of thousands of customers. Californians were powerless, without air conditioning, in the hottest weather many had ever experienced. Climate scientists have known this was coming, and it may only be the beginning.’We studied this a long time ago . . . now our projections are becoming reality,’ tweeted Katharine Hayhoe, a climate scientist at Texas Tech University.”

Global Temperature Rises Could Be Double Those Predicted By Climate Modeling
The Guardian; July 06, 2018

“Temperature rises as a result of global warming could eventually be double what has been projected by climate models, according to an international team of researchers from 17 countries. Sea levels could also rise by six metres or more even if the world does meet the 2 degree target of the Paris accord. The findings, published last week in Nature Geoscience, were based on observations of evidence from three warm periods in the past 3.5m years in which global temperatures were 0.5-2 degrees above the pre-industrial temperatures of the 19th century. The researchers say they increase the urgency with which countries need to address their emissions.”

Deepwater Horizon Disaster Altered Building Blocks of Ocean Life
The Guardian; June 28, 2018

“Oil spill disaster reduced biodiversity in sites closest to spill, report finds, as White House rolls back conservation measures. The 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill disaster may have had a lasting impact upon even the smallest organisms in the Gulf of Mexico, scientists have found – amid warnings that the oceans around America are also under fresh assault as a result of environmental policies under Donald Trump. Lingering oil residues have altered the basic building blocks of life in the ocean by reducing biodiversity in sites closest to the spill, which occurred when a BP drilling rig exploded in April 2010, killing 11 workers and spewing about 4m barrels of oil into the Gulf.”

Flaws in the Baker-Schultz Carbon Tax Plan
Clean Technica; June 25, 2018

“Since retiring from the Congress, former Senators Trent Lott, a conservative Republican from Mississippi, and John Breaux, a conservative Democrat from Louisiana, have spent many years as oil industry lobbyists. That being the case, it clearly came as a surprise to many people that they put together a political action committee (PAC) to support a carbon tax. I have to admit that I was intrigued when I saw an article in Vox, “Energy lobbyists have a new PAC to push for a carbon tax. Wait, What?’

The post July 2018 Climate Science Round-Up appeared first on 350PDX.

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Contact: Damon Motz-Storey 303.913.5634 damon@oregonpsr.org

(PORTLAND, OR) – The broad network of groups backing the Portland Clean Energy Community Benefits Initiative, known as the “Portland Clean Energy Fund,” held a press conference today outside Portland City Hall to announce they had collected over 60,000 signatures for the initiative in under two months. With support from hundreds of volunteers, the Portland Clean Energy Fund collected 25,000 more signatures than needed to qualify for the November election. The large number of signatures gathered exceeded the campaign’s goals and reflects the strong level of support for the Portland Clean Energy Fund at a time when measures to promote renewable energy are being rolled back at the federal level.

“Portlanders have shown us that they share our goal of bringing opportunity through good paying jobs in clean energy7u and renewable energy infrastructure like solar power to Portland’s most underserved communities”, said chief petitioner Reverend E.D. Mondainé (pictured), President of the NAACP Portland Branch and Pastor of the Celebration Tabernacle Church in North Portland.

“Like many places in the United States, Multnomah County and the City of Portland have made a commitment to 100% renewable energy,” said Tony DeFalco, Executive Director of Verde, which builds environmental wealth in communities. “The Portland Clean Energy Fund is absolutely essential to reaching that goal and giving a boost to communities who have been harmed by the fossil fuel economy and left out of the current economic boom.”

“Right now corporations are experiencing record profits while many communities in Portland are experiencing record poverty,” said Khanh Pham, Manager of Immigrant Organizing at the Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon (APANO). “This measure will make billion-dollar corporations share some of those record profits with Portlanders who need it most.”

The Portland Clean Energy Fund would raise more than $30 million per year to support new solar power and other renewable energy, energy efficiency housing upgrades, and other climate resiliency efforts. The measure includes living-wage job training for low-income Portlanders and people of color. The Portland Clean Energy Fund would be funded by a 1% business license surcharge that would only apply to mega-retailers with more than $1 billion per year in nation-wide gross revenue.

34,156 Portland voter signatures are required to qualify a city initiative for the ballot. Supporters are confident that the more than 60,000 signatures collected will be more than sufficient to qualify.

More than 135 organizations and businesses and over 50 elected officials, public figures, and faith leaders have endorsed the Portland Clean Energy Fund Campaign. The Steering Committee consists of the following members:

Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon (APANO),

Coalition of Communities of Color (CCC),

NAACP Portland Branch,

Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA),

OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon,

Verde,

350 PDX,

Audubon Society of Portland,

Columbia Riverkeeper,

Oregon Chapter, Sierra Club

Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR).

A full list of endorsements, more information, and the full text of the initiative is available at www.portlandcleanenergyfund.com.

The post Portland Clean Energy Fund Brings in Over 60,000 Signatures appeared first on 350PDX.

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Photo courtesy of Rogue Climate

In my previous post on Jordan Cove, I highlighted the dangerous climate warming effects of this project.  However, there are many more reasons to oppose the LNG terminal and Pacific Connector Pipeline.  

The pipeline would negatively affect many communities that lie in its path.  In 2017, Counterpunch wrote an article about a protest against Jordan Cove LNG Project. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission mandated that four open houses be held for citizens to give their input on this project. These events brought many different stakeholders to speak, including tribal members, ranchers, timber farmers, and environmentalists. I would encourage you to read their testimony.

Here is an example of how different groups would be impacted:

  • The Pacific Connector pipeline would run 233 miles through Southern Oregon, impacting 400 streams, rivers and other waterways. This includes land and resources sacred to Native American tribes. Ted Drier made a great Youtube video about the pipeline where he says, “The Klamath, Karuk, and Yurok tribes have all passed resolutions opposing the Jordan Cove project, noting that it threatens tribal legal rights, cultural resources, traditional tribal territories and burial grounds.”

You can take action to help stop this pipeline from ever being built and impacting these communities by submitting a comment asking the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to deny water quality permits for the Jordan Cove fracked gas terminal and Pacific Connector Pipeline.

We need thousands of people across the region to submit comments asking our agencies to stand up for clean water by denying the permits to build this fracked gas project. If built, this project would not only be the largest climate polluter in the state, but would threaten over 400 Oregon waterways, endanger public safety, and encroach upon traditional tribal lands.

Learn more and take action at an upcoming comment writing workshop and performance of “The Folly of Frack”:

The comment period closes on July 21st – submit your comments to the Oregon DEQ and the U.S. Army Corps today.

By: Brent Swanson & Nicole Metildi

The post Jordan Cove Fracked Gas Project – Comment Period Open appeared first on 350PDX.

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350PDX by Nicole - 3w ago

This past winter and spring, 350PDX volunteers, staff, and Board members worked together to create five strategic goals that are meant to guide 350PDX’s work. The goals were created with input from across the organization by way of several surveys and meetings with 350PDX general membership and volunteer leaders.

They are as follows (and you can also see them here):

Advance the climate justice movement in alliance with frontline communities*

  • Work in coalition with other organizations, especially frontline communities
  • Train and educate 350PDX volunteers on environmental and climate justice
  • Respond to requests of frontline communities
  • Advocate for social justice where it intersects with climate change

*According to the Oregon Just Transition Alliance platform, frontline communities refers to, “people of color, low income communities, and rural and tribal people [who] are at the front line of environmental and climate injustice [and that these communities] must lead the efforts to address climate change.”

Progressively replace the extractive economy with a regenerative one that is healthy and just for all

  • Work for 100% renewable energy
  • Work in and support the Just Transition Movement
  • Promote community-owned renewable energy
  • Promote energy efficiency and reduce community-wide energy use
  • Remove the fossil fuel industry’s social license, which includes fossil fuel divestment
  • Educate the public about the extractive economy and where it intersects with climate change

Reduce emissions and atmospheric greenhouse gases to support a thriving planet

  • Stop new fossil fuel infrastructure projects locally, regionally, and beyond
  • Pressure utility companies to transition to renewable energy sources and eliminate reliance on fossil fuels
  • Pressure the state legislature to pass bold pro-climate policies
  • Support a just transition away from existing fossil fuels
  • Explore ways 350PDX can advocate for emission reduction in the sectors of sustainable agriculture, forestry, and transportation
  • Promote ideas for how individuals can lower their carbon footprint

Build a community that is resilient to the effects of climate change

  • Support projects that prepare and equip the Portland Metro Area to withstand extreme weather and the effects of climate change
  • Hold events and workshops that creatively promote dialogue and relationships that encourage wellbeing in a changing climate
  • Promote mutual aid (people helping people) in response to climate disasters

Nurture an organization that is inclusive, transparent, and compassionate

  • Support and mentor current and emerging leaders
  • Create and foster transparent pathways for new activities and ideas to be realized within 350PDX
  • Improve diversity, equity, and inclusion within 350PDX
  • Reflect on and improve the organization’s structure and culture
  • Facilitate dialogue between 350PDX members about social justice issues

Author: Nicole Metildi

The post 350PDX’s Strategic Goals appeared first on 350PDX.

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350PDX by Adriana Voss-andreae - 3w ago

A monthly curated collection of climate activism news, protests, public marches, direct actions, and related court cases. We are regularly inspired by the creative and courageous resistance we see around the globe, and we hope that gathering the stories here will keep you motivated, informed and connected. 

Trans Mountain Pipeline and Kinder Morgan

Inslee calls Canada pipeline ‘profoundly damaging,’ fears for orcas in surprise deal
The Seattle Times, Lynda V. Mapes; May 29, 2018

“An unprecedented deal between the Canadian federal government and Houston-based Kinder Morgan to expand the Trans Mountain Pipeline poses grave risks for the critically endangered southern-resident killer- whale population, and drew a stiff rebuke from Washington’s governor, who called the pipeline ‘profoundly damaging.'”

Say hello to Justin Trudeau, the world’s newest oil executive
The Guardian, Bill McKibben; May 30, 2018

“Justin Trudeau’s government announced on Tuesday that it would nationalize the Kinder Morgan pipeline running from the tar sands of Alberta to the tidewater of British Columbia. It will fork over at least $4.5bn in Canadian taxpayers’ money for the right to own a 60-year-old pipe that springs leaks regularly, and for the right to push through a second pipeline on the same route – a proposal that has provoked strong opposition.”

I was arrested for protesting against Canada’s pipeline – and the battle is far from over
The Guardian, Elizabeth May; May 30, 2018

“The Alberta oil sands lie under thousands of square kilometers of boreal forest, wetland and muskeg. Bitumen is a viscous substance found in small concentrations amid the rock and soil. It is either mined out from huge open pits, or pumped out through in situ production, injecting hot water deep into the ground to loosen it. Either way, the resulting product is highly polluting, very expensive to produce and of low value. Bitumen is a solid. To be refined, bitumen must undergo costly upgrading. Bitumen, being both low value and expensive to produce, would never have been developed without government subsidies, with the lowest royalty rates in the world at 1% and massive federal subsidies of several billion/year.”

Washington Tribes Vow To Fight Canadian Pipeline Expansion
OPB, John Ryan; May 30, 2018

“Tribal leaders on both sides of the border said Canada’s purchase of the Trans Mountain pipeline would not weaken their opposition to the pipeline’s planned expansion.”

Judge Orders EPA to Produce Science behind Pruitt’s Warming Claims
Scientific American, Scott Waldman; June 5, 2018

“EPA must produce the opposing body of science Administrator Scott Pruitt has relied upon to claim that humans are not the primary drivers of global warming, a federal judge has ruled.”

TransCanada Pipeline Explodes in West Virginia
EcoWatch, Lorraine Chow; June 7, 2018

“A newly installed TransCanada natural gas pipeline exploded early Thursday in the remote Nixon Ridge area of Marshall County in West Virginia.”

Calls for the environment from Margaret Atwood and the Pope

Margaret Atwood: ‘If the ocean dies, so do we’
BBC News, Mary Halton; June 11, 2018

“The celebrated author Margaret Atwood has told a conference that humanity’s future is linked to the survival of ocean ecosystems. Commenting on ocean plastic pollution, she said: ‘Something has to be done… If the ocean dies; end of us.’ Ms Atwood was speaking at the Under Her Eye summit in London. The conference, held at the British Library, also heard that climate change disproportionately affects women on a global scale. In addition, their voices are ‘too rarely heard’ in top level climate change discussions. Aiming to tackle key environmental issues ‘from a female perspective’, the event hosted a range of policy makers, artists and scientists.”

Pope Tells Oil Executives to Act on Climate: ‘There Is No Time to Lose’
The New York Times, Elisabetta Povoledo; June 9, 2018

Three years ago, Pope Francis issued a sweeping letter that highlighted the global crisis posed by climate change and called for swift action to save the environment and the planet. On Saturday, the pope gathered money managers and titans of the world’s biggest oil companies during a closed-door conference at the Vatican and asked them if they had gotten the message.

A manifesto to save Planet Earth (and ourselves)
BBC News, Simon Lewis and Mark Maslin; June 7, 2018

“The impacts of human actions on our home planet are now so large that many scientists are declaring a new phase of Earth’s history. The old forces of nature that transformed Earth many millions of years ago, including meteorites and mega-volcanoes are joined by another: us. We have entered a new geological epoch, called the Anthropocene. As scientists we agree that society has entered a dangerous new time. But what is to be done?”

Can art help people feel the devastation of climate change?
Pacific Standard, Amy Brady; June 6, 2018

“Massie’s Climate Museum­­­—whose board of trustees and staff plan to start looking in several years for a permanent home in New York City—is only the second of its kind in the world (the first is in Hong Kong). Its purpose, she says, is to educate people about the effects of climate change through exhibits and public programs that appeal as much to emotion as to intellect.”

The Poor People’s Campaign

Activists channel Martin Luther King with new national climate campaign
The Guardian; Oliver Milman; June 11, 2018

“The Poor People’s Campaign’s attempt to stage a ‘moral revival’ across dozens of US states echoes much of its 1968 antecedent – a guttural cry to shake America from a miasma of racism, poverty and militarism. But the modern version has also opened up a new battleground – the environment.”

How to protest in Trump’s America according to people on the frontlines
Grist; Justine Calma; June 11, 2018

“‘Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and establish such tension that a community that has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue.’ — Martin Luther King, Jr. In April 1963, Martin Luther King, Jr., wrote his Letter from a Birmingham Jail after being arrested during a civil rights demonstration. Fifty-five years later, the words he wrote aren’t lost on today’s pipeline protesters and people’s climate marchers. From Standing Rock to Bayou Bridge protests, the movement toward a climate-just future has never made bigger headlines. And the stakes have never been higher — for the planet, for vulnerable communities, and for those protesting to save it.”

Compiled by Kelly Jensvold and Nicole Metildi

The post Activist News Roundup #11 appeared first on 350PDX.

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How are we doing?

The news is a barrage of outrageous political acts and disturbing compliance in the face of injustice. Facts are considered elitist and optional. Profiteers are driving the political process globally and locally. The arctic is melting, drought and floods create chaos and famine and migration and wars. Houselessness grows in our city. Racism and xenophobia continues to traumatize our neighbors and friends.

Anyone paying attention is subject to grief, anger, fear, numbness, and numerous other emotions that tempt us to turn away, to take a break, to shut down. All of these feelings are reasonable responses to a dysfunctional world. The good news about this phenomenon? These responses are born of the fact that we have hearts that care, that we feel connected to each other, and the world.
Traditional environmental organizing tends to focus on the “Doing” – holding actions to lift up concerns, to slow destruction, to rally for laws, actions, and solutions to the problems of our day. This is important work, and encompasses the protest and stopping of destructive forces, as well as the offering and advocacy for sustainable, just solutions and the cultural shifts that can sustain them. However, traditional organizing can have a high rate of intensity and burnout, and many caring people may be reluctant to enter into the fray for a variety of reasons, including time capacity, skills, and the overwhelm of the endless and daunting work ahead.
The Climate Odyssey program addresses these issues by offering experiences, events, and perspectives that acknowledge the complicated and emotionally challenging parts of our work of climate justice. In so doing, it offers support for those already engaged in the work, and opens doors of possibility to those who are not yet active in the movement. The program also aims to grow capacity for effectiveness and ongoing community building and solidarity.

Practices for Personal Resilience

Knowing the dire circumstances of the present and potential crises related to Climate Disruption, how do people stay present and involved, and motivated in climate justice work? How do we deal with despair, overwhelm, fear, and anger that can arise in the face of what seems to be a cultural and economic mandate of denial of the issue, and a minimization of the active harm already inflicted on vulnerable people, nations, and ecosystems?

Some practices in this arena will include facilitated group sharing to lessen isolation, personal contemplative practices, and other ways of finding our ground in tumultuous times. Additionally, there will be workshop offerings on Active Hope, Resistance and Resilience, and related work that address the heart/spirit concerns of community members.

Growing and Strengthening our Community

Author and activist Kathleen Dean Moore tells the story of how she is constantly asked the question, “What can one person do to change the world?” She replies, “Stop being one person!” The work of justice, whether around climate or other related issues, needs to happen in community, and in practices that invite and support the experience of community, through growing relationships, sharing concerns and hopes, and celebrating successes; all of these are vital parts of movement building.

Creative Arts Practices

Engagement in arts events -whether hands-on art builds in service to actions, or arts experiences that build a sense of community- can be an effective form of organizing and growing community. The arts engage our hearts and minds in ways that can be joyful, embodied, and inspiring. Western culture has “professionalized” art making, and the reclaiming of creative practices is a reclaiming of one of the deepest connections we can have within our community. When we sing together, tell stories, make poetry, play with improvisational theater, we are claiming our intelligence and imaginal capacities, personally and collectively.

Growing Capacity as Allies in the Work of Justice

350PDX has been working in the Portland Just Energy Coalition on the exciting Portland Clean Energy Fund effort, and we plan to continue this effort of justice-based organizing after the election. We want to increase cultural competency within our membership. Doing coalition work with communities of color, immigrant communities, labor, and other groups will likely bring up issues of privilege, racism, class, and other cultural assumptions. Anti-racism/anti-oppression/cultural competency training for volunteers, leadership, and staff will help us in our collaborative work. This is not only skills work, but also heart work that allows us to bring our full selves to the work at hand, and work effectively and consciously within our larger community.

Upcoming Climate Odyssey Events and Opportunities

Starting in September, the Climate Odyssey program will offer monthly events on the third Wednesday of the month. The September 19th event will be Climate Conversations, a gathering designed to get to know each other and share our responses to what’s going on in the world, and in our hearts. Past participants in this event have expressed enthusiasm for the feelings of connection and hope they experienced in the process.

350PDX teams can request a Resilience and Resistance Mini-workshop, which gives a great framework for self and community resilience. Facilitated by Climate Odyssey coordinator Barbara Ford, they are 1½ hours in length, and can help grow trust and care within your team. Contact Barbara at barbara.e.ford@gmail.com to schedule a mini-workshop.
More events are being planned! Stay tuned.

Written by: Barbara Ford

The post Climate Odyssey Program – Growing Our Community As We Work for Climate Justice appeared first on 350PDX.

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