Our Climate exists to force political leaders to solve the climate crisis by advocating for solutions grounded in science and social justice.
Climate change is an issue of racial, geographic, and socioeconomic inequity. However, unlike other social justice struggles which define our progressive legacy, this crisis is also bound by the unforgiving laws of ecology, chemistry and physics. Its severity compounds exponentially--and irreversibly--with each passing moment of inaction. According to the International Energy Agency, the world must reverse its trajectory of investments in fossil fuels by 2017 to prevent a catastrophic 2°C rise in average global surface temperatures.
We have so delayed action that only comprehensive and bold measures are viable: chief among them, a science-based and economy-wide price on greenhouse gas pollution.
Our Climate recruits and empowers young people to be effective change-makers. There is no question that students and millennials already support action on climate. A January 2016 USA Today/Rock the Vote poll revealed that 80 percent of millennials believe the U.S. should move towards “mostly clean or renewable energy” by 2030. Young people fully recognize that if rising greenhouse gas emissions are not addressed, their lives and livelihoods - and certainly those of generations to follow - are directly threatened.
Despite this strong support for a swift energy transition, there is a noticeable lack of youth involvement in the climate policy sphere on the state and federal level. Many of the groups occupying this crucial space tend to be comprised of older, often retired, activists who have the time and resources to devote to campaigns. Focused organizing can dramatically narrow the youth gap between ideals and action on climate. We use mass communications (such as film and social media), and we send teams of trained student and youth volunteers into the field with creative organizing projects and focused, hopeful messages.
Young leaders were pivotal in shaping policy during the civil rights movement, the anti-Vietnam war protests, and the election of President Barack Obama. Millennials want to respond to the pressing issue of their time: climate change. Their involvement and voice can be incredibly powerful, but it will take a targeted and solution-focused effort like ours to break through the cynicism and fully engage the energy of young generations.