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.
Climate change will hit Africa hardest so this fight is about climate justice. Many of the poorest Africans, women and children are already facing more drought, floods and extreme weather that threaten their livelihoods and push food prices up. The fact is climate change is going to affect all of us.
We believe that an African grassroots movement can hold our leaders accountable to the realities of science and the principles of climate justice. That movement is rising from the bottom up all over the continent and is coming together to champion solutions that will ensure a better future for all.
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:
Climate change is happening now and will threaten us all
The vast majority of climate scientists agree that human activities that release CO2, like burning coal and fossil fuels, are causing global temperatures to rise, which is increasing the number of extreme weather events like drought and flooding.
We are running out of time. An average increase of 2°Celsius in global temperatures now looks certain and even a smaller change can mean a big increase in extreme weather.
The developed countries of the global North started burning fossil fuels over 300 years ago but now countries across Africa are also becoming more and more addicted to coal and gas to produce energy. We all have to look to cut CO2 or catastrophic climate change will threaten the lives of millions of Africans.
We have the solutions we need to address the climate crisis
In Africa we can learn from the mistakes of developed countries and build our economies based on clean, smart renewable solar and wind energy, that can help solve the climate crisis and lift millions of people out of poverty.
Many countries in Africa have the perfect climates for clean solar and wind power, and the technology is costing less and less. Solar can also increase access to electricity for isolated communities.
The fossil fuel industry is at the heart of the crisis. That is why in Nigeria, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, South Africa, DRC, Kenya and many other countries, people are demanding that fossil fuels stay in the ground, that our governments choose clean solar and wind energy and that the rest of the world does the same.
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.