EVERETT — They’re calling it a “Grand Alliance.” An environmental group, 350 Everett, and the Communities of Color Coalition plan to formally join forces Monday. They aim to work together on social issues and efforts related to conservation and climate change.
“We realized that climate change problems affect everybody, but they affect the most vulnerable people most,” said Everett’s Dean Smith, a 350 Everett organizer along with his wife, Jennie Lindberg.
“We’re interested in collaborating with C3, helping them on social issues and they’ll help us on environmental issues. This is all related,” he said Thursday.
Their Grand Alliance meeting, which is open to all, is scheduled for 7:15 p.m. Monday at the Everett United Church of Christ. “The 350 Everett/C3 Alliance understands that protecting everyone from the negative effects of climate change means advocating for those who don’t have a voice,” the groups said in a statement announcing the event.
“We’ll have a little signing ceremony and a speaker,” said Smith, 75, who is retired after working as a research mathematician, and in aerospace and bio-medical research. The couple moved to Everett from Edmonds about 12 years ago.
Smith said 350 Everett’s first big event was an Earth Day climate march in April. “We had 300 to 400 people,” he said.
The Communities of Color Coalition, or C3, is a longstanding, nonpartisan Snohomish County group focused on equal opportunities, fair treatment under the law, and the elimination of racism. In 2016, the Snohomish County Human Rights Commission honored the nonprofit with its annual community organization award.
Although 350 Everett is relatively new, formed in 2016, its local history dates back several years. Smith was founder of the Snohomish County Train Watch group. In 2014 and 2015, its volunteers conducted tallies of trains carrying crude oil and coal through the county.
The 350 Everett group grew from Train Watch efforts. It has a focus “on climate justice and climate recovery,” according to its meeting announcement, along with a goal of halting new fossil fuel infrastructure and working toward a renewable energy economy “that works for all.”
And that number — 350?
The national group, founded by “Fight Global Warming Now” author Bill McKibben, took its name from a 2007 Goddard Institute for Space Studies research paper saying that 350 parts per million of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is an upper limit to avoid climate crises.
“We may never see 350 again in our lifetime,” said Smith, noting that today’s CO2 level is well over 400.
“We’re seeing the impact of it, the hurricanes and droughts,” he said. “This is exactly what was predicted.”
Julie Muhlstein: 425-339-3460; firstname.lastname@example.org.
The environmental group 350 Everett and the Communities of Color Coalition will sign a document Monday to form the 350 Everett/C3 Alliance. The public is welcome at a “Grand Alliance” meeting scheduled for 7:15 p.m. Monday at the Everett United Church of Christ, 2624 Rockefeller Ave.