We’ve been making noise about the 350 parts per million target for about a year now — and if you’ve been following our blog, you’ll know that we’re making progress by leaps and bounds. Hundreds of thousands of people took action in their communities in 2008 in support of a strong and just climate agreement, and the world has been listening. We’ve been covered in the New York Times, Washington Post, Sydney Morning Herald, Toronto Star and featured on copious blogs worldwide, in every language. In Poznan, Poland and Bonn, Germany, 350.org delivered the message to UN negotiators, and delegates of small island states spoke of the 350 target in high-level meetings.
Because of all of our early success, and our innovative approach to engaging people all over the world, TreeHugger — the premier green lifestyle blog — awarded the 350.org campaign Best Way to Get Politically Active as part of their Best of Green Politics and Business. Here’s what they had to say about 350.org:
Sometimes it’s really hard to single out one organization above others and come up with a “best.” This is one such category, as frankly there are so many ways to get active in green politics…so many issue areas, so many scales (from the super-local neighborhood level to national or international). But considering that the effects of climate change will be so far reaching, it seemed appropriate to highlight an organization working in that area.
Thus, if you want to get involved with just one green political effort this year, make it 350.org. Join 350.org co-founder and director Bill McKibben in one of the best grassroots organizations, campaigning to make sure that politicians take fair, comprehensive and strong actions on climate change. Work between now and October 24 to make your voice heard and pressure politicians to enact a fair, comprehensive and strong global climate change treaty.
Thanks, TreeHugger, for the shout-out and kind words. We’ll be barrellling ahead, with our network of hundreds of community groups around the world, to make 2009 the year of the climate.
Apart from all the grassroots action, one thing we haven’t talked a lot about is how to get to 350. Of course, we know the basics: invest in a clean energy economy that puts people all over the world to work, make everything energy efficient, stop cutting down trees, and focus on helping developing countries adapt to a changing climate while reducing their carbon emissions.
Two groups of experts are coming together the first weekend of May to discuss the important task of getting to 350. One conference, led by Columbia University students in New York City, will focus on the scientific aspects of the 350 transition. This 350Conference will host luminaries such as Dr. James Hansen, Majora Carter and Ambassador from Papua New Guinea, Kevin Conrad. To register, go to 350conference.org. If you’re planning on attending, let us know!
Another, parallel group will be meeting at Middlebury College, in Middlebury, Vermont, at a workshop entitled Getting to 350: Building Strategies for 21st Century Aspirations. There, Dr. James Hansen and Bill McKibben will address participants via (low-carbon) video feed. Led by Middlebury College Economics and Environmental Studies Professor Jon Isham, the group will discuss the social, cultural, economic and scientific challenges to getting to 350.
If you’re thinking about registering an October 24 action, but aren’t sure what to do, consider hosting your own 350 conference, where you and your community can get together and discuss how your town, city, province or state can take the necessary steps to get to 350. Even if you don’t have all the details worked out, register your event now, and make sure to follow our twitter feed and check back at the 350.org blog for live updates from both conferences.