You may remember that the Student Sustainability Committee was a sponsor of the Fall 2017 Friday Forum lectures series at the University YMCA, “Building a Better Environmental Movement.” The series was a resounding success, featuring such speakers as the Indigenous Youth Council that were key organizers in the Standing Rock protests. Normally, the theme of each lecture series lasts only one semester, but we are lucky to be able to hold one last “Building a Better Environmental Movement” lecture on April 13th, featuring a very special speaker – Bill McKibben, environmental writer and co-founder of 350.org!
McKibben has many claims to fame, one being “the nation’s leading environmentalist,” according to the Boston Globe. He began his career as a journalist as climate change first began to receive national attention in the late 1980s, and published his first book, The End of Nature, in 1989. Today, McKibben is best known as an activist and the driving force behind 350.org. Began in 2008, 350 is an international NGO that seeks to encourage both citizens and global leaders to take action against the rising concentration of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere and associated global warming. 350 is a reference to the belief of climate scientist James E. Hansen that any concentration above 350 parts per million (ppm) is fundamentally unsafe for human life. (Currently, we are just shy of 410 ppm). Notable campaigns and projects that 350.org has worked on include the Keystone XL pipeline, fossil fuel divestment, and the People’s Climate March.
Bill McKibben’s wealth of experiences as a writer, activist, and environmentalist make him one of the leading voices and experts in climate action today. We are incredibly lucky to be able to host him on our campus, and encourage you to take advantage of the opportunity to hear him speak. The lecture will be held at the Ikenberry Commons Student Dining & Residential Programs Building on April 13th, 2018, at 12 pm – we look forward to seeing you there!
In the meantime, we encourage you to attend the current Friday Forum series at the University YMCA, held each Friday at noon in the YMCA’s Latzer Hall. The current lecture series theme is Art + Activism.