Aug 04, 2021
Natalee Braun, Volunteer with
350VT's Role in Addressing the Climate Crisis was founded in 2008 by a group of university friends in the United States along with author Bill McKibben, who wrote one of the first books on global warming for the general public. The goal was to build a global climate movement. 350 was named after 350 parts per million — the safe concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

Our first actions were global days of action that linked activists and organizations around the world, including the International Day of Climate Action in 2009, the Global Work Party in 2010, Moving Planet in 2011. 350 quickly became a planet-wide collaboration of organizers, community groups and regular people fighting for a fossil free future.

Note from Natalee: 

Even a casual glance at recent news could convince the reader that extreme weather is occurring around the world more frequently in the form of floods, droughts, heat waves and wildfires. Increasingly, scientists are coming forward to link these catastrophic events to climate change and urging rapid action to address the accelerating rate of these changes. Along with many other organizations addressing this issue, is an international movement working to build a world of community-led renewable energy for all. As one of the state affiliates, 350VT's mission is to organize, educate, and support people in Vermont to work together for climate justice. 

There are currently two multi-faceted campaigns underway with 350VT. Our ReWild Vermont initiative hopes to build on the connections between food justice, climate action and ecological restoration to meet the goal of planting one hundred thousand trees across the state by the end of 2022. The role of trees in sequestering carbon is a key aspect of this campaign, as drawing CO2 down from the atmosphere is critical to mitigating climate change. 350VT is also providing strong backing for a Just Transition. 

I've come to climate justice activism as a result of a lifetime of finding great joy in nature and of being deeply concerned about the catastrophic impact of the current climate change trajectory. As a psychologist in the Burlington School District I am deeply committed to improving the lives of my students. Helping insure a livable earth and a sustainable future is at the heart of both my volunteer and professional commitments which also include membership on the Essex Energy committee, mentoring through Mercy Connections and  volunteering at the Peace and Justice Center.