[tab target=”letter”]Letter[/tab][tab target=”highlights”]2013 Highlights[/tab][tab target=”financials”]Financial Information[/tab]
Dear friends and supporters,
2013 was a turning point for building the climate movement’s power around the world. 350.org started it off with huge momentum coming out of Bill McKibben’s 2012 Rolling Stone article and our subsequent Do the Math tour, which introduced a new way of thinking about the climate issue. That momentum only grew as the year progressed.
Our corresponding fossil fuel divestment campaign has spread like wildfire, and it has put the fossil fuel industry on the defensive. A recent study from Oxford University concluded that its growing faster than any previous divestment effort and could have a “far reaching impact” on the fossil fuel industry’s bottom line. As a result the new narrative of “unburnable carbon” is taking root and influencing political decision-making.
Whether we are fighting a single dirty pipeline, challenging the economic underpinnings of the fossil fuel industry, or campaigning for global solutions, we know that this fight takes stamina, perseverance, and hope. We are in it to win it — and are so grateful to stand together with all of you in the fight of our lives.
There’s so much more to share with you, so please read on to learn more about our work in 2013. We look forward to continuing our work with your generous support in 2014 and beyond. We cannot possibly do this without your support and activism. Thank you so very much!
In February, we joined with our allies and converged in Washington, DC for “Forward on Climate”: the largest climate rally in United States history. Over 40,000 people braved the frigid temperatures to tell President Obama to reject the Keystone Pipeline and become a climate leader. We continued the fight throughout 2013, as evidenced through the 240 Keystone XL events held across the country, with at least one in each state.
In April, we launched the “Do the Math” movie to spread the new arithmetic of climate change. There were thousands of local screenings around the globe, and hundreds of thousands of additional views online — getting a crucial climate message to people outside of the proverbial choir. We also organized a successful “Do The Maths” tour across Australia and New Zealand in July, and a “Fossil Free Europe” tour in October.
Throughout the year, we worked with partners to spread the the “Go Fossil Free” campaign to divest from fossil fuel companies. We directly targeted the two things that corporate polluters care about most: their reputation and their money. In barely a year, the campaign has spread from campuses to churches and communities, and it has taken off in the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and across Europe. A new study out of Oxford University has found “The outcome of the stigmatisation process, which the fossil fuel divestment campaign has now triggered, poses the most far-reaching threat to fossil fuel companies.” This is great news for our campaign, because while we have no illusions about divestment directly affecting the bottom line of fossil fuel companies, we hope that eventually, the bad publicity will limit their power, much like similar campaigns in the past did for the tobacco companies.
In June, we trained more than 600 young activists from 135 countries at “Global Power Shift” to spark a wave of climate action around the world. Skill tracks included organizing, digital campaigning, non-violent direct action, media, policy, and participants were also able to suggest their own topics for break-out sessions. After the training, these leaders went home to their own countries to organize National Power Shifts to catalyze powerful movements from Vietnam to India, Ukraine to Argentina. These events, mobilizations, trainings, and strategy sessions were held throughout the second half of 2013 and continue into 2014. The goal is to develop the type of political transformation that’s required for real climate progress in 2015 in the lead up to the UN climate negotiations.
Over the course of the final weeks of July, we worked with partners across the US to coordinate a series of bold direct actions. We called it “Summer Heat”, and from coast to coast, we joined with local activists to confront the fossil fuel industry and stand up for our future. From the Pacific Northwest to the coast of Maine, from the Keystone pipeline route to the White House, to the Utah desert where they’re developing the first tar sands mine in the US, we tried to get across the essential message: it’s time to stand up – peacefully but firmly — to the industry that is wrecking our future. As we said then: “as temperatures rise, so do we.” In November and December, during summer in Australia, we turned up the heat with a campaign there as well.
Also in summer 2013, we held our first fellowship program placing 40 student leaders in the divestment campaign, placing them with community groups around the country to learn more about grassroots organizing, campaign planning, and other useful tools that they can bring back to their campuses. These students went on to plan the Keystone XL dissent action in which 400 activists were arrested at the White House to resist Keystone XL.
In September, Draw the Line events were held to draw the line against Keystone XL and the tar sands. Seattle had over a thousand people draw the line between the Puget Sound and the train tracks that could lead to exporting an inflated fossil fuel dependency. In Texas, folks drew the line against the southern leg of the Keystone XL Pipeline right on TransCanada’s home turf. In New Orleans, a marching band drew the line against continued threats to the Gulf Coast communities. In Nebraska, landowners built a barn directly in the line of the proposed northern segment of the Keystone XL pipeline. In Detroit, the line was drawn between residents and refineries burning tar sands.
When Typhoon Haiyan ravaged the Philippines in November, our team sprung into action. We raised money for direct relief efforts, supported our local team in the Philippines to supply aid to those in need, and helped coordinate vigils to stand in solidarity with the people hit hardest by the storm. And a year after Hurricane Sandy hit the USA, we joined with community, labor, social and environmental justice groups to call for a fair recovery and clean energy for everyone.
All the work in 2013 helped to grow and build the strength of the climate movement in the US and around the world. While the climate news continues to be grim, we can begin to see a path toward solutions. If we simultaneously hold President Obama accountable to his climate speech, where he indicated he could reject Keystone XL on climate grounds, we continue to take away the social license of the fossil fuel industry, and we build political power and strategize around the world, we begin to see how our movement could unlock the stalled UN climate talks and move toward climate solutions and action.
Dear friends and supporters,
We could not do this work without financial contributions, so our immense thanks goes out to the thousands of supporters around the world who have made donations to strengthen our ability to work with and for the movement on climate change.
Our staff has grown to keep up with this growing movement, but we are lean and frugal, and strive to make every donation count.
In addition to individual donations, 350.org’s work in Fiscal Year 2013 was supported by the following foundations
Binnacle Family Foundation
Clif Bar Family Foundation
Dreaming Hand Foundation
Edwards Mother Earth Foundation
Flora Family Foundation
Frankel Family Foundation
Fullerton Family Foundation
Grantham Foundation for the Protection of
The Guide Foundation
Joseph & Marie Field Family Environmental Foundation
The Kendeda Fund
League of Young Voters
Lear Family Foundation
Linden Climate Progress Fund
Long Island Community Foundation Kingfisher Fund
Mertz Gilmore Foundation
Mize Family Foundation
New Venture Fund
Rockefeller Brothers Fund
Rockefeller Family Fund
Schumann Media Center
The Stanny Foundation
Tishman Family Foundation
TomKat Charitable Trust
V. Kann Rasmussen Foundation
Wallace Global Fund