Are you organizing for your community in New York and want to fight for climate justice globally?

New York City, home to 8.6 million people, is already experiencing the brunt of the climate crisis. Six years ago, Hurricane Sandy flooded the city, destroying 650,000 homes and leaving 7.5 million people without power, a devastation New Yorkers still remember vividly today. But this city, known for its tenacity and resilient diaspora communities, is not giving up.

Communities are organizing on the ground to pass the Climate Mobilization Act through City Council, to fight the Williams Pipeline, and pushing for a statewide level to pass the Climate and Community Protection Act. New York City, home to the United Nations Headquarters, can be a pivotal climate game changer and carries the responsibility to amplify local grassroots movements, fights, and successes at a global scale.

Who are we?

SustainUS is a youth-led organization, a community of young people (ages 18-28) from diverse geographies and identities across the United States who train one another in action, media, and solidarity organizing skills so we can organize for long-term climate justice. We have a proven track record of taking strategic action at key political moments. From the UN Climate Talks to global moments, we bridge local and national organizing with global movements for climate justice.

What is the Summit?

While the US fails to meaningfully engage in international climate politics, the fossil fuel industry remains at the UN table, and any mention of fossil fuels continues to be left out of the text of climate agreements. While countries gather to propose increased ambition within the UN, we know who truly pulls the strings of the UN climate negotiation process: the fossil fuel industry and regressive Global North politicians.

This September, the international climate conversation is coming to NYC. The UNSG (UN Secretary General) Climate Summit will be held at UN Headquarters in New York City on September 23rd during the second week of the UN General Assembly (UNGA), and countries like Germany, Bolivia, and even the US, are supposed to reveal “ambitious” actions towards tackling the climate crisis. The Summit aims to encourage high-level officials who are in the room for the UNGA to amp up their climate commitments prior to the 25th UN Climate Talks (COP25) in Chile. But without real legal ramifications and accountable commitments, this event serves little more than a greenwashing press conference. We are tired of empty promises and inadequate responses to this global climate crisis.

What will we be doing?

SustainUS is launching a delegation of 10 NYC based youth (18-28) to organize around the September Summit. We are working locally in order to create a robust strategy both in and outside of the Summit walls. The delegation will serve as the planning group for a local training curriculum, and will develop demands that connect local campaigns to international policymaking on climate action. This delegation will push the conversation inside the UN to reflect the calls to action by communities on the frontlines of climate change.

Throughout the summer, members of the NYC Delegation will meet once a week for two hour delegation meetings. During the first hour, the delegates will deepen their community with one another, share about local campaigns, and build a team together. During the second hour of each meeting, the delegates will learn together through a training, such as learning about international climate policy from one of SustainUS’ global climate justice partners and friends, or training with local trainers in order to become trainers themselves. The Delegates will attend coalition meetings across New York, as well as organize around the High Level Meetings at UNHQ in New York City in July.

The Delegation will consist of:

  • Weekly evening meetings from mid June through early October
  • Deep community building within the delegation, across New York groups and movements
  • Training with SustainUS’s local and global partners
  • Trainings to strengthen your training skills, which will be used at trainings occurring around Summit actions
  • Opportunities to practice training at local weekly trainings throughout the summer
  • Developing curriculum identifying the connections between local and global climate crises to be used at local trainings
  • Possibility of attending the UNSG Summit in September
  • Support with fundraising for delegation activities
  • Attending coalition meetings throughout New York City

Who are we looking for?

Pleas apply to this delegation if you are:

  • 18-28-years-old
  • From a NYC community impacted by environmental injustices or already feeling the impacts of climate change, view an intersection between climate change and your organizing around another issue areas (ie migration, #CLOSErikers, or Black Lives Matter), or are actively involved in organizing in NYC
  • Ready to commit 4-8 hours of work per week towards the Delegation from June 2019 – early October 2019
  • No previous organizing or climate experience necessary
  • Excited, passionate, and have a love of learning!

Please note SustainUS is in the process of fundraising for costs such as reimbursing travel and food, as well as need-based stipends.

Applications close Tuesday June 25th. Don’t wait – apply for the delegation today.