NORWAY — Downtown Norway will be the site of the largest climate action gathering ever to take place in western Maine. On Friday and Saturday, March 6 and 7, the Center for an Ecology Based Economy in Norway is hosting the 2020 Vision: Finding Hope in Climate Action Climate Convergence. Following a kickoff event with author and activist Bill McKibben on Thursday night, climate activists from all over Maine will be converging on downtown Norway for two days of skill building, training, support, action and celebration.

The Friday session is titled “Skills for Action.” It will begin with youth activists meeting with Mr. McKibben who co-founded the worldwide climate justice organization 350.org. and has written several books and countless articles on the climate crisis. The day continues at the Unitarian Church with 20 workshops in five tracks designed to support activists of all ages and experience levels in their work. A range of topics will be covered, including basic climate science, digital tools for remote collaboration, communication strategies, grant writing, fundraising, facilitation skills, global climate politics and exploring technology and policy solutions. In addition, there will be workshops on the role of music and art in building movements and how to organize a climate action, as well as discussions on building community, supporting youth and ending oppression within the movement, sustaining ourselves as climate workers, and conflict resolution.

Following the day of workshops will be a short training on planning climate actions followed by a public rally at Longley Square. Friday will end with an evening reception at Café Nomad and an open house and poetry reading across the street at CEBE in the Commons featuring Martin Steingesser along with poets and writers featured in a Dangerous New World, a recent anthology of climate related poetry and prose.

The Saturday event “Finding Your Place, Building a Movement” is designed for everyone, from those just learning about the climate crisis and wanting to do something about it, to committed activists looking to deepen their engagement and effectiveness in the movement. The morning’s Keynote speaker will be Chilean global climate activist Felipe Fontana who is a student at the College of the Atlantic. Most of the workshops on Saturday are focused on climate solutions in the CEBE focus areas of food, shelter, energy, transportation, along with education, and direct action. Topics will include: solar power, the Consumer Owned Utility bill, clean transportation and electric vehicles, deep energy building retrofits, regenerative agriculture and soil health for climate healing, uniting the climate justice and labor movements, fossil fuel divestment, educating for sustainability, land justice, art and activism and many more. CEBE working groups on the above-mentioned focus areas will host presentations and discussions in the afternoon to provide opportunities to get involved locally.

Across the two days, workshops will be facilitated to balance expert presentations with open discussion, encouraging all voices to be heard, building capacity locally and fostering a unified climate movement in Maine to parallel the efforts of Maine’s Climate Council.

“After seven years of organizing here in Norway and statewide, we are so pleased to see the climate movement in Maine gaining so much momentum, even becoming a national leader after years of lagging behind.” said Scott Vlaun, CEBE’s Executive Director. “We thought it would be great to offer a way to build collective knowledge, help unite the movement, and invite people who are just becoming aware of the severity of the climate crisis to find hope through taking action on some level. Having Bill McKibben here, is a huge boost for us.” Vlaun added.

As of this writing registration is at capacity for the Friday workshops. The Thursday night and Saturday events still have space. Please check in advance for ticket availability.

While organized by CEBE staff and volunteers, this event is co-sponsored by numerous local businesses and statewide organizations including Sustaining All Life Maine, Maine Climate Action NOW!, 350Maine, GarboKane Integrated Solar Builders, Sierra Club Maine, Revision Energy, Insource Renewables, Pleasant Hill Property Services, Natural Resource Council of Maine, Café Nomad, Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association, NextGen Maine, Midcoast Conservancy, Alliance for Economic Democracy, The Union of Concerned Scientists, Efficiency Maine, Oxbow Beer Garden, Lake and Watershed Resource Management Associates, Black Dog Timberworks, Maine Passive House, the Tribune Bookstore, and Fare Share Cooperative Market.

To learn more about the 2020 Vision Climate Convergence please visit CEBE at www.ecologybasedeconomy.org or find “2020 Vision Norway” on Eventbrite.com to register.

For more information, call CEBE at 739 2101 or email [email protected]


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