For immediate release
Portland’s in! Mayor Charlie Hales helps Portland join over a dozen US cities pursuing divestment from fossil fuels, urges state to follow suit
PORTLAND, OR—Just two hours after members of 350 PDX, the local chapter of Bill McKibben’s organization 350.org, urged the Portland City Council to divest any funds it may have tied to fossil fuel companies, Mayor Charlie Hales announced his support for fossil-fuel divestment in Portland and urged the state of Oregon to follow suit during a keynote speech for UN World Environment Day. This announcement adds Portland to a growing list of more than a dozen US cities committed to total divestment over the next five years.
350 PDX was delighted by the news after having worked hard over the past few months on building momentum for divestment through a grassroots effort that included signature gathering for a petition directed at the Portland City Council and direct contact with city council members. 350 PDX organizer Adam Brunelle expressed his group’s excitement: “Given that our atmosphere recently reached the dubious milestone of 400ppm of CO2, we are thrilled not only that our Mayor recognizes the urgency of the issue, but that he also recognizes fossil fuels as risky long-term investments.”
“Why take this seemingly risky investment strategy?” Hales offered. “Because [NOT] doing it is the truly risky move. The vast majority of fossil fuel assets are owned by 200 publicly traded companies. Eventually, these companies will burn through their entire reserves. We don’t know when that will happen, but by definition, we know that it must.”
“By acting locally,” Hales declared, “we can send a message to the world that investment in fossil fuels is a losing proposition, and that loosening our dependence on fossil fuels will increase our quality of life.”
350 PDX citizen activist Dr. Adriana Voss-Andreae, a mother concerned for her children’s future, commented: “The message is loud and clear: If it is wrong to wreck the climate and the planet, then it is wrong to profit from that wreckage. We thank the Mayor for hearing our message and showing bold leadership by asking our state to do the same.”
“The City,” Hales said, “must urge the Oregon State Treasurer, the Local Government Investment Pool and the Oregon Investment Council to divest of all state holdings in fossil fuels.”
Come to the next 350 PDX meeting!
This Saturday, June 8th
@ Red & Black Cafe
400 SE 12th Ave, Portland, OR
There are lots of opportunities to get involved!
Possible project groups include:
Media & Communications
Summer Heat (350.org event)
NW Fossil Fuel Exports
Oregon Climate Action Day was a big success. Bonnie, Adriana, and Adam helped represent 350 PDX and talked with legislators to express support for a carbon tax in Oregon.
We met with Rep. Jules Bailey, Sen. Rosenbaum’s office, and more!
Visit OregonCAN for more information on the big day and to learn more about a carbon tax for Oregon.
Check out these two recent articles detailing divestment efforts in Portland!
Sustainable Business Oregon
We invite you to the first Oregon Climate Action Day on Wednesday, May 22nd at 11am on the Oregon Capitol steps in Salem. Join hundreds from across the state who share a vision of climate solutions and a thriving clean energy economy.
Throughout the day, our trained citizen lobby teams will meet with 20 legislators to ask that they author or sign on to an effective, market-based, upstream solution we believe in: a revenue-neutral carbon tax that sets a scientifically-determined and predictably graduating price on pollution. Oregon can implement such a policy to significantly cut greenhouse gas emissions and boost our local, renewable economy (as modeled by the tax levied in British Columbia in 2008 and proposed at the national level by the Citizens Climate Lobby).
We are proud as Oregonians to be part of a state with a history of bipartisan problem-solving and innovation on tough issues – from the bottle bill to current healthcare innovations – and know that Oregon can again lead the country on humanity’s greatest challenge yet: climate change.
Oregon Climate Action Day attendees will help launch the grassroots network Oregon CAN: which exists to connect climate-concerned Oregonians, organize creative advocacy, educate onarket-based climate solutions, and to empower citizens to lobby their elected officials.
This event is a point of convergence for people on fronts across the state engaged in the good fight to break free from dependence on destructive fossil fuels.
RSVP today to firstname.lastname@example.org to join a citizen lobby team and ask your Representative or Senator to support an effective, upstream, market-driven solution to climate change. Fossil fuel lobbyists are there every day. It’s time for us to show up and defend our state and future.
Remember to sign up here for the countdown till May 22!
**Click below for additional info:
If you plan on joining us in Salem on Wednesday, May 22nd, please let me know so we’ll have an idea of the numbers of people we expect to have from the Portland Metro Area.
Contact me if you need general or carpooling info.