Happy January! Welcome to our monthly newsletter, where we highlight some of the amazing work our volunteer teams have been up to. Read on to learn about their accomplishments, how you can join a team, and opportunities to take action!
Fossil Fuel Resistance Team
We’re hard at work in campaigns to fight the dangerous myth of “natural” gas. Did you know that cutting methane is the strongest lever we have to address climate change in the next 25 years? That’s why we’re developing educational materials to share with our legislators and neighbors about the dangers of methane gas. We’re also calling on Multnomah County to enact a ban on new buildings hooked up to fossil fuels and fighting the incessant greenwashing and misinformation campaigns coming from our local utilities, like NW Natural.
TAKE ACTION: Tell OPB to stop sponsoring NW Natural! Our public radio shouldn’t be promoting the fossil fuel industry.
GET CONNECTED: We meet virtually every other Tuesday at 5:30pm, and our next meetings are on Tues, Jan 25 and Tues, Feb 8. To get the zoom link and to also sign up for an orientation to the team, reach out to Melanie (email@example.com).
Our team follows the money, working as part of the national coalition StopTheMoneyPipeline (STMP). We call on financial institutions, insurance companies, and the government to divest from the fossil fuel industry.
What’s happening now:
- Divest Oregon: Reinvest in a Fossil-Free Oregon – a statewide coalition that our team helped to found – is now 80+ organizations strong! We’re pressuring the Treasurer and Oregon Investment Council to end new investment in fossil fuels, disclose the holdings they manage, transparently phase out current fossil fuel
investments, and move to climate-safe investments using a social justice framework. How much are we talking about? $130 Billion, $90 Billion of which is state employees’ retirement.
- Divest Oregon workgroups reflect our multifaceted campaign: Outreach (to organizations, individuals, and legislators asking them to join us), Legislation (to support a bill for Treasury disclosure of the holdings they manage and a climate risk analysis they have undertaken), Research (to back public records requests and inclusion on gubernatorial candidate questionnaires), Communications (media outreach and social media campaigns), and Strategy (to keep it an effective effort!) See slides from our January general meeting for an overview.
- The Defund/Divest Team is taking a break from monthly meetings until the end of the legislative session; our team is working on the Divest Oregon campaign! We keep communication going with a weekly email about actions of our team and our allies, such as pressure campaigns on corporations and the government and support for frontline resistance to fossil fuel infrastructure.
Local divestment campaigns in educational institutions are ongoing, with our team providing resources and support.
TAKE ACTION: Tell the State of Oregon to divest from fossil fuels
GET CONNECTED: Reach out to Jenifer (firstname.lastname@example.org) for a conversation about our team and to receive our weekly Defund/Divest team email. Click here to join the Divest Oregon team! Meetings are the third Wednesday of the month at 2 pm; workgroups meet during both day and evening.
Forest Defense Team
The Forest Defense Team works to fight climate change by advocating for forest management practices that increase carbon sequestration and storage, decrease forestry sector carbon emissions, and improve community and ecosystem resilience in the face of the changing climate. We just launched three new sub-teams focused on different aspects of Forest Defense:
- Protect Drinking Water from Industrial Logging
- Advocate for vigorous implement of ODF’s Climate Change and Carbon Plan
- Increase Shade Equity in the City of Portland
TAKE ACTION: January 20th (TODAY!) is a National Day of Action to protect the largest and most valuable carbon store in the country: the Tongass National Forest. Join allies in asking the Biden Administration to restore the National Roadless Rule in the Tongass. Submit a comment today!
GET CONNECTED: Do any of our new campaigns sound exciting to you? Join us at our next Forest Defense team meeting on February 7th at 6:00pm or contact Forest Climate Manager Brenna Bell (email@example.com) to learn more.
City/County Watchdog Team
The City/County Watchdog team works to make sure we have local policies rooted in environmental justice and climate action. We recently worked towards getting environmental justice and climate action addressed in the City Charter Review process. The City’s charter is like its constitution, and the review process is a once-in-a-decade opportunity to transform structural barriers into supportive and responsive systems and institutions that will support Portland in surviving and thriving for the decades to come.
GET CONNECTED: Join us at our next Watchdog meeting Feb 3, 5:30-7:00pm. Contact Brooke (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Indi (email@example.com) for meeting details or for more info about the team.
The recently-formed Creative Team amplifies and strengthens the work of the 350PDX campaign teams by developing a compelling narrative strategy. We use a “story-based strategy” method to help campaign teams take apart dominant narratives, investigate the myths we believe, build and participate in. And we pause to bring deeper intentionality to campaign words, imagery and assumptions. What’s our aim? To craft new stories that help reveal the future we all deserve!
We’re continuing our work with the Fossil Fuel team’s gas campaign. Through a series of collaborative workshops, we’ve landed on our Phase I audience, an initial narrative theme that uses some humor, and started designing a postcard and scripting a video.
We have an odd need – maybe you or someone you know could help us:
- We’re looking for a living room that is styled in a mid-century modern way (think 1960s) that could be the set of our video. We’d need it for about 2 hours and we can discuss Covid protocols that work for the owner (there would be 2-3 of us, all triple vaxxed, but the actress would need to be un-masked for a portion). Let Kyla know if you know of anyone willing! firstname.lastname@example.org
Some things we’re reading / exploring right now:
- Catching up on Mary Annaise Heglar and Amy Westervelt’s guest columns’ this fall in The Nation, like “To Build A Beautiful World, You First Have To Imagine It”
- 2022 Narrative Predictions (warning: it’s heavy, but getting out of our progressive narrative bubble can force us to get clear on what we want and how we can get more people on board to get us all there)
GET CONNECTED: Fill out this form to get on our roster.
In November and December, we settled into our wonderful new art build space at the new 350PDX office. We held five art builds through December and painted lots of sunflower umbrellas for our 350PDX Arts Team fundraiser. We also created burmashave banners to advertise the global Climate Conference, and earlier made posters for that conference. Upcoming possible plans include: creating lawn signs, designing postcards, and hosting a celebration for the amazing amount of funds we raised in December from members’ art.
Last October, the 350 Southwest Team began shaping our team goals for 2022. We didn’t meet in December, but through our meetings last November and this month we’ve created a plan for upcoming projects. We’re looking into making yard signs for strategic placement in high foot-traffic areas to inspire active support for climate solutions (for example: Solar Power for All, Divest from Oil and Gas) and connect people to 350PDX. Sign distribution will require outreach to local schools, progressive faith communities and other community organizations located where we expect many pedestrians would see them. We will also invite them to join our weekly sign-holding actions once the days lengthen enough that late-afternoon commuters can read our signs. We hope to support others who start their own actions in other locations as well.
Members of our Southwest team live not only in SW Portland, Multnomah County (downtown and south to Multnomah) but also Washington Co. (unincorporated Beaverton and eastern parts of Beaverton) and Clackamas Co. (Lake Oswego, West Linn).
GET CONNECTED: We welcome newcomers to our monthly meetings, currently held on Zoom. Find our meeting listings on the 350PDX calendar. Our February meeting will be on Monday, Feb. 21st, 6:30-8:00 p.m. Contact email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org to get on our email list or have coffee with one of us!
Washington County Team
We are currently working in these areas:
- Participating in legislative lobbying visits around energy and climate bills coming forward in the legislative short session. If you live in Washington County and would be interested to occasionally meet with your legislators about climate policy and issues (online for now), please let us know! We’ll be happy to invite you to join us as we schedule future meetings.
- Preparing plans for stewardship of Hillsboro’s downtown Bagley Park, including new pollinator plantings
- Tracking recycling issues around local waste collectors, such as Ridwell’s new service in Washington County. If this is of interest to you, the Washington County Garbage and Recycling Advisory Council and the Washington County Board of Commissioners are engaging now in discussions around possible policy changes.
- Preparing for Earth Day activities
- Planning to do regular sign waving locally in partnership with Fridays for Future. Projected start date is February 18
GET CONNECTED: The 350 Washington County team meets virtually at 6:30pm every second Tuesday. We frequently have expert presentations and always discuss opportunities we can take for climate action. For more info or to join the group, please contact Debby Garman at email@example.com
350PDX Staff – Brenna, Chris, Dineen, Indi, and Julia
350PDX Board & Team Leads