350 Central Mass is an all-volunteer climate-action organization.
Our home is Central Massachusetts, the heart of the Commonwealth.
We work locally and nationally to end our dependence on fossil fuels
and transition to a just and sustainable future for all.
No More Empty Promises
By Nicole Nelson
A bus carrying just one passenger hurries past Union Station
So little time. So few buses.
A bicyclist races to keep up with traffic.
With no bike lane, he is a moving target
The hurried bus clips his bike,
Tossing the cyclist to the ground and his mask falls from his face
A gust of wind carries the mask further into the city
It scrapes the streets
And flows past unhoused folks with hungry bellies
It tumbles through graveyards and the smoke stacks of dirty corporations
75 mph on a hurricane
Until it settles on the last tree left in what was once a lush, enchanted green forest
A curious crow picks it up
Falls prisoner to the deadly white straps
The crow wrestles with it ‘til he is finally set free and the mask is taken by another gust of wind out to sea
A hungry whale unable to find his next meal swallows the mask
It travels in the empty belly of the whale
Until it is washed up once more on land
The ocean floods over and rips the mask from the decayed belly.
As the flooding subsides, the soggy mask sticks to leftover wood of a devastated house to dry
There it remains til cleanup
It is tossed in a bin and taken to a landfill where it is swept up by one final gust of wind
The mask is once again one with the forest
And there it remains until it burns up in flames.
Nicole gave this address at the No More Empty Promises climate rally on March 19 at Worcester City Hall. The rally was organized by Sunrise Movement Worcester (www.facebook.com/sunriseworcester), a close partner of 350 Central Mass. Nicole is a member of 350CM and Sunrise, and a student at Clark University, Worcester.
On May 7, a dozen 350 Central Mass members rallied at a Bank of America branch in Worcester. We demand that BofA stop financing the Line 3 tar sands pipeline. BofA is one of the largest sources of money for building this environmentally devastating pipeline, which is on land of indigenous people in Minnesota. The builder, Enbridge, started construction without the permission of these Americans. Our actions support the #DefundLine3 Day of Action.
March 26 was an historic day for climate action in the Commonwealth: Governor Baker signed the Roadmap Bill into statute!
This is the first piece of climate legislation passed in Massachusetts in over a decade. This bill creates the foundation for bold and robust statewide climate policy for years to come. This win would not have been possible without the tireless efforts of local activists like you.
Over the course of the 2019-2020 legislative session, advocates organized in communities across the Commonwealth to tell our decision-makers that we need bold, progressive, statewide action to effectively combat the climate crisis. 350 Central Mass was very active in this effort. Thank you for your efforts to get this bill over the finish line, and onto the Governor’s desk!
We are especially excited to share that the Roadmap Bill will:
Codify the definition of Environmental Justice, including the impacts of climate change in the bill's definition of "environmental burden.”
Strengthen Massachusetts’ emissions reductions targets to establish a 50% reduction by 2030 and a 75% emissions reduction goal by 2040. These targets hold the Commonwealth accountable to its residents for reducing emissions in our building and transportation sectors in years to come.
Direct the Department of Energy Resources to develop a Net Zero stretch code that cities and towns will have the option to adopt by 2022.
We know that our work is far from over. However, today we are better positioned than ever to keep mobilizing for stronger protections for Environmental Justice communities, a rapid transition off of polluting sources of energy, and an efficiency-based Net Zero building code that ALL communities adopt.
Banking on Climate Chaos
In the 5 years since the Paris Agreement, the world’s 60 biggest banks have financed fossil fuels to the tune of $3.8 trillion. Runaway funding for fossil fuel extraction and infrastructure fuels climate chaos and threatens the lives and livelihoods of millions.
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