What is a Climate Emergency Declaration?
A Climate Emergency Declaration is a resolution or a bill passed by a regulatory body (school district, municipality, college, etc.) that officially recognizes the climate crisis as an emergency. It sets clear and urgent goals and timelines to mitigate the effects of climate change. Climate emergency campaigns have taken place across the state, led by youth and adults. To learn more about the climate emergency movement, check out the Climate Mobilization’s website here.
Former Portland Mayor Strimling accepting Climate Emergency Resolution
Who has Declared a Climate Emergency?
As of fall 2020, more than 1,814 governments and 30 countries have declared a climate emergency. This includes the following Maine communities:
- South Portland, resolution here
- Portland, resolution here
- Bar Harbor, Task Force on the Climate Emergency here
350 Maine’s Portland and South Portland Climate Emergency Work
350 Maine supported youth activists in Maine Youth Climate Strikes and Maine Youth for Climate Justice organize strikes all over Maine on September 20th, 2019, as part of a global day climate strikes. At the September 20th Portland Climate Strike, youth activists asked the Cities of South Portland and Portland to declare a climate emergency. 350 Maine volunteers and staff helped youth write the Climate Emergency Resolutions that were handed to City Councilors and the Former Mayor of Portland at the strike. After this, they helped youth prepare testimony for the Portland and South Portland City Council meetings where the Resolutions were discussed, while also showing up and testifying themselves. After both Cities declared Climate Emergencies, youth in Maine Youth for Climate Justice and adults in 350 Maine began meeting monthly with both cities’ sustainability offices to hold the cities’ future actions and One Climate Future plan accountable to the Climate Emergency Declaration. This is now an ongoing campaign.
High school student testifying at the South Portland City Council Meeting
How to Get Involved
If you are an adult or young person who would like to receive more information, start a campaign, or get involved with the South Portland and Portland Climate Emergency work, email our Youth Engagement Coordinator!