We're building an African movement to fight climate change.
How we work:
If you attend a 350 Africa action for the first time, you might be surprised that there are probably no 350Africa.org staff running the show.
350 is a movement more than an organization. We use grassroots organizing to run locally-driven campaigns in every corner of the globe.
350Africa.org’s small team of paid staff supports grassroots activists running their own independent, loosely affiliated organizations and campaigns across the continent.
The climate crisis is about power — but not just the kind of power that keeps the lights on. We believe that the only way we’ll see meaningful action on climate change is if we can counter the power of the fossil fuel industry with the power of people taking collective action.
We use online tools to connect that power, help those people see themselves as one movement, and to facilitate public actions.
We’re an international movement of ordinary people working to end the age of fossil fuels and build a world of community-led renewable energy for all. Here’s How we get there:
Spark a fast & just transition to 100% renewable energy for all.
Stop and ban all new coal, oil + gas projects.
Block fossil fuel money from corrupting everything.
1. A fast & just transition to 100% renewable energy for all
Accelerate the transition to a new, just clean energy economy by supporting community-led energy solutions
2. No new fossil fuel projects anywhere
Stop and ban all oil, coal and gas projects from being built through local resolutions and community resistance.
3. Not a penny more for dirty energy
Cut off the social license and financing for fossil fuel companies — divest, desponsor and defund.
What we do:
350Africa.org is building an African movement to fight climate change.
We are part of a million-people strong global climate movement that campaigns through grassroots organising and mass public actions in 188 countries.
The number 350 means climate safety: to preserve a liveable planet, scientists tell us we must reduce the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere from its current level of 400 parts per million and rising, to below 350 ppm.
With over 3000 languages spoken across our continent, words don’t always get the point across. This wordless animation explains 350Africa.org in 90 seconds:
We are bold, creative and strategic
The climate crisis is immense –– we must be daring and courageous in response. We embrace experiments and new solutions, recognizing that this crisis requires innovative ways of solving problems.
We work for justice
The fight against climate change is a fight for justice. People all over the world are feeling the impacts, but the people suffering most are the ones who have done the least to cause the problem.
The work we do — and the ways we do it — has to address that injustice. That means listening to the communities who are getting hit hardest, amplifying the voices that are being silenced, and following the leadership of the people on the frontlines of the crisis.
We care for and trust one another
We take care of ourselves and our communities, honor one another in our non-violent approach to this work, and share that spirit and learning with others.
No one has all the answers, so we value the experience and knowledge of our partners and our communities. That's why we listen to them –– so we can learn and evolve together.
We are stronger when we collaborate
The climate crisis is not just an environmental issue, or a social justice issue, or an economic issue — it’s all of those things at once. The only way we will be strong enough to put pressure on governments and stand up to the fossil fuel industry is if we all work together.
That means bringing people together and building diverse coalitions — from students, to workers unions, human rights and social justice groups; from marginalized communities and faith groups, to universities, business owners and all those who believe in the need for transformational change.
We are transparent and accountable
To ensure the integrity of our work, we strive to be transparent and open, while respecting everyone's right to privacy and ensuring people's safety.
We are accountable to each other, to the people and groups we collaborate with, and to those impacted by our work. We strive to honor the relationships we build with each other.
350.org was founded by a group of university friends in the U.S. along with author Bill McKibben, who wrote one of the first books on global warming for the general public.
When 350 started organizing in 2008, we saw climate change as the most important issue facing humanity — but climate action was mired in politics and all but stalled. We didn’t know how to fix things, but we knew that one missing ingredient was a climate movement that reflected the scale of the crisis.
So we started organizing coordinated 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, and Climate Impacts Day in 2012. We held the “world’s biggest art installation” and “the most widespread day of political action in the planet’s history.” We figured that if we were going to be a movement, then we had to start acting like one. Click here to watch videos of these global mobilisations.
Today, 350.org works in almost every country in the world on campaigns like fighting coal power plants in South Africa, Ghana and India, stopping the Keystone XL pipeline in the U.S, and divesting public institutions everywhere from fossil fuels. All of our work builds up people power to dismantle the influence of the fossil fuel industry, and to develop people-focused solutions to the climate crisis.
Some of our proudest moments of recent years include campaigning against the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines in the United States; stopping fracking in hundreds of cities in Brazil and Argentina; pushing more than 1,000 universities, foundations, cities and churches to divest more than $12 trillion from fossil fuels; and joining historic grassroots mobilizations like the People’s Climate March and Global Climate Strike.
We’re part of 350.org, an international movement of ordinary people working to end the age of fossil fuels and build a world of community-led renewable energy for all.
350 works on grassroots campaigns across the globe, from opposing coal plants and mega-pipelines, to supporting renewable energy solutions and cutting the financial lifelines of the fossil fuel industry. All of our work leverages people power — individuals working together in pursuit of a common goal — to dismantle the influence and infrastructure of the fossil fuel industry. Find more on our About page.
How do I get involved?
At minimum, make sure you’re on our mailing list. Browse the rest of this page to see how you can make bigger contributions in a local group setting. From there, what you do and how much you get involved is up to your group’s needs, your interests, and how much time you want to put in!
I don’t have time to commit to a local group. How can I still be involved?
Whether in person or online, simply talking with those around you about the climate crisis and what’s happening in your area is an important step toward making change. Also follow climate action groups like 350Africa.org on social media and share their content for a low-commitment way to show your support.
If there is no local campaign group in your area yet, consider bringing other local supporters together for a one-time event – a potluck meal, film-screening, or roundtable discussion. By building relationships between passionate people in your community, a group is more likely to emerge, even if you’re not available to lead it yourself.
If you’re in South Africa, you can also donate to keep the movement strong.
Can you help run this campaign for me?
You know your own community better than anyone, so we believe local groups are best suited to run – and win! – their own campaigns. However, we can provide resources and guidance so you’re prepared to act on the changes you want to see.
Why aren’t you talking about things like recycling and veganism?
Our campaigns focus on building transformative power that challenges the status quo and social license of the fossil fuel industry. That means less focus on personal consumption choices (which are incremental) and more emphasis on collective action (which can tackle massive systemic issues).
Both are important, but we believe that by building a movement linked to these three demands, we can reach political tipping points that allow for change big enough to halt the climate crisis:
A fast and just transition to 100% renewable energy
No new fossil fuel projects, anywhere
Not a penny more in finance for the fossil fuel industry
So should I go ahead and start a local group?
If you can identify a few other dedicated people in your community to help you and are committed to 350Africa.org’s basic demands and organizing principles, yes! Get started.
Our vision is to have thousands of local groups standing in solidarity with each other. It does take time, commitment, and energy to steer a group to maturity, but it’s precisely that sort of commitment we need if we are to change the course of history.
I already have a local group. Can we join 350Africa.org?
That’s great! If you’re already in a group, you’re probably seeing the benefits of meeting face to face and organising together. Read through the local group guidelines and apply to register your group.
How much support will 350Africa.org offer when I start a group?
We have plenty of trainings and resources available to help you, and we often run campaigns that local groups can easily plug into. Depending on your location and how much staff or volunteer capacity is available, we also might be able to provide coaching and other direct support. But remember, in the end it’s you who can build a real local movement where you live.
Will 350Africa.org pay us to run a local group?
No, 350Africa.org cannot pay you to run a group. However, we do have trainings on how to fundraise so your local group can gain its own resources to stand independently.
Can I do my work placement at 350Africa.org or at a local group?
You can join as a volunteer, but we do not offer formal internships or work placements and cannot transfer volunteering into school credits. A local group or partner organization might have a different answer – please contact them directly.