350.org Australia aims to rapidly end fossil fuels by building a global climate movement.
The number 350 means climate safety: to preserve a liveable planet, scientists tell us we must reduce the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere from its current level of 400 parts per million to below 350 ppm.
We believe that a global grassroots movement can hold our leaders accountable to the realities of science and the principles of justice. The movement is rising from the ground up all over the world and is uniting to create the solutions that will create a better future for all. 350.org Australia is a not-for-profit project helping build this movement from our corner of the globe.
How we work
Building a grassroots movement is at the centre of everything that we do, because we know it’s only through people-power that we can achieve our vision for the future.
Our movement is built through leaders forming local groups, and running strategic campaigns in their communities that are connected by a national and global strategy. This is supported by 350 staff, volunteer teams, digital tools, and a high quality training and mentoring program.
We think that the climate crisis is about power — but not just the kind of power that runs our cars and keeps the lights on. We believe that the only way we’ll see meaningful action on climate change is if we can counter the power of the fossil fuel industry with the power of people taking collective action. Our movement is united around our mission, grounded in the realities of science and principles of climate justice, and is empowering and transformational for those involved.
350.org Global was founded in 2008 by a group of university friends in the U.S along with author, environmentalist and activist, Bill McKibben.
Since then, 350 has grown into one of the world’s largest creative activism groups working to build a powerful movement demanding climate change action. We work in almost every country in the world to stop new fossil fuel projects and speed up the transition to renewable energy.
Since the early days, 350.org Australia has grown into a grassroots movement of over 60,000 individuals and many local groups across the country. Our movement has run campaigns that have kept fossil fuels in the ground, and supported a rapid and fair transition to renewable energy. We work closely with the global 350.org movement, which has mobilised people in 188 countries, and with climate justice groups here in Australia and beyond.
Some of our proudest moments include seeing eight Australian universities and many more local institutions divest from fossil fuels; standing in solidarity with the historic Pacific Climate Warriors’ blockade of the Newcastle coal port; getting commitments from Australian banks to not fund Adani’s huge new coal mine in the Galilee Basin; and holding our politicians to account in the lead up to Federal Elections.
350 Australia’s board is made up of passionate leaders and experts in their field.
Blair Palese is the co-founder of 350.org Australia and was CEO from 2009 to 2018. She is a 350.org Australia director and chair of the Green Music Australia board with a 30 year career of working with organisations, businesses and government agencies on climate change and environmental protection.
With over 25 years not-for-profit sector and commercial recruitment experience Richard is widely recognised as Australia’s leading recruitment specialist for the not-for-profit sector.. Before establishing NGO Recruitment in 2004 Richard was a fundraising and membership professional for Greenpeace Australia, UNICEF Australia, the Bobby Goldsmith Foundation and the Inspire Foundation. Since 2004 Richard and his team have successfully placed over 3,000 candidates in more than 500 national and international not-for-profit organisations. Richard joined the 350.org Australia board in June 2016.
Neha has over a decade of experience in Australian political campaigning and is driven by the power of grassroots organising to win tangible outcomes for social justice.
Currently, Neha is a National Director at Democracy in Colour – the first Australia-wide organisation led by and for people of colour, and for economic justice. Previously she was a Senior Campaigner at 350.org Australia. Neha has worked on the Yes campaign for Marriage Equality, and she was a Digital Campaigner in the Australian union movement.
Donald has unique experience across three major financial disciplines of funds management, banking and corporate treasury. Most recently Donald worked for Westpac in Asia establishing its Financial Institution Group. Previously Donald worked for 10 years National Australia Bank as Global Head of Funds and Insurance. Donald was Treasurer of the Wilderness Society between 2012 – 2015.
John studied Medicine in Edinburgh, Scotland, and subsequently worked as a doctor in the UK and overseas. From 1991-96 he wrote a popular weekly medical column for The Observer Newspaper, UK. His novels – all published by Penguin – include “Kingsley’s Touch”, “A Paper Mask” and “The Rig”. Since moving to Sydney in 1998 he has written or co-written a number of feature films , often with an environmental theme, including the Oscar nominated “Master and Commander” and the Oscar winning “Happy Feet.” More recent work includes “Creation”, “Walking with Dinosaurs”, “Wolf Totem” and “Tanna”, which was nominated for best foreign language Oscar. His latest film is “Hotel Mumbai”.
James is a barrister who advises and appears for government authorities, corporations, community and conservation groups, developers and individuals in significant planning, environmental and property litigation. In 2001 he was a Consultant for the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in East Timor. In 2002-3 he completed holds a Masters in Public International Law at the University of Leiden. James has a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Science (Physics) from the University of New South Wales. He was a member of the management committee of The Wilderness Society for five years, including being the convenor.
Shannon has two decades of experience in strategic fundraising leadership and consulting on system and process improvements in the non-profit sector around the world, mostly for iNGOs. She is regularly asked to participate in sector leadership groups and to speak on topics including donor acquisition and retention and fundraising ethics. She has been a finalist or won multiple Fundraising Institute of Australia (FIA) awards, including the 2020 award for Most Innovative Campaign. She holds a Master of Public Affairs from the University of Sydney and, originally from Canada, a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto.