On Thursday, The Climate Mobilization (TCM) launched an online initiative to encourage Americans to push the government to take action on climate change. TCM is a coalition of environmental and climate justice groups — and these organizations want you to sign a petition to get Congress to declare a climate emergency.
The climate emergency declaration TCM wants to see would involve a massive mobilization of "people, resources, and companies on a scale larger than that of World War II to reverse global warming and prevent catastrophe," TCM said in the press release. "This must be a wide-scale, inclusive and equitable transformation and rebuilding of our society to one based on renewable energy, employment, and economic opportunity."
Margaret Klein Salamon, the founder and executive director of The Climate Mobilization, tells Bustle that declaring a climate emergency is essential because climate change is an urgent issue that needs to be tackled now. "The truth is, global warming is an accelerating existential threat to our planet. We are all in danger — you, me, my family, your family," she says. "If we are going to have a chance of protecting humanity and the natural world, we need to confront reality and push for solutions that could actually work."
Salamon says TCM hopes to have at least 100,000 people sign the petition asking Congress to declare a climate emergency.
"If the people of the U.S., through their elected representatives, declare a Climate Emergency and commits to achieving zero emissions and drawdown in 10 years or less through WWII-scale Climate Mobilization, it would be a huge victory and global breakthrough," Salamon says. "This is our best chance to reverse the climate emergency before it’s too late."
According to its news release, TCM has partnered with a variety of organizations in this petition initiative, including Earth Uprising, Movement Rights, Black Alliance for Peace, and Zero Hour, among others. Notably, the initiative is also affiliated with a broader global climate emergency campaign that asks local governments around the world to declare climate emergencies. TCM said that around 600 cities, along with the countries of Canada and the United Kingdom, have all declared climate emergencies.
If you are interested in signing the climate emergency petition, you can do so via this online form provided by TCM. You simply need to provide your name and contact information and then either opt to use TCM's messaging requesting the emergency declaration or write your own. Salamon tells Bustle that petition signatures will be sent "with a letter to the signer’s congressional delegation," which includes both of their senators and their congressional representative.
TCM decided to launch the petition just ahead of the 2020 Democratic presidential debates "in the hopes that as many candidates as possible will affirm their commitment to declaring a national climate emergency in their remarks."