350 Aotearoa is the New Zealand arm of the international climate movement 350.org, which aims to unite the world around climate change solutions.
Our mission is to strengthen and grow climate action in communities across New Zealand.
We coordinate local campaigns by providing education, practical tools, and support for community leadership. Our campaigns challenge the cultural acceptance of fossil fuels, and push New Zealand and the rest of the world back on track to 350ppm and, consequentially, climate safety (350 is the number that leading scientists say is the safe upper limit for carbon dioxide—measured in “Parts Per Million” in our atmosphere. 350 PPM).
The work of 350 Aotearoa is sustained by our passionate teams of volunteers across the country, our small team of hard-working staff, our dedicated board, and our supporter base, who donate and amplify our work.
Erica Finnie Campaigner & Community Organiser
Erica has been involved with 350 since the very beginning when we first launched (and she was 14 years old!), and co-led divestment campaign at the University of Auckland. Many of you may have seen her speaking alongside Bill McKibben at his Fossil Free Acceleration Tour here in May 2018.
Erica’s passion for climate justice guided her tertiary study, and she recently completed a Masters thesis that highlighted the resilience of Pacific people in the face of climate change. Erica believes that grassroots movements and the power of everyday people are vital to overthrowing systems of oppression and creating a fairer, and safer future for people and planet.
Now based in Wellington, Claudia was a key member of 350 Dunedin, and the Otago University divestment campaign. Claudia stepped in to coordinate Bill McKibben’s Fossil Free Acceleration Tour in 2018. Her role is to make our grassroots Fossil Free movement stronger than ever!
We know our voices are stronger when we raise them together. Climate change is the fight of our time, and to create meaningful change we need to act together. We began as a grassroots movement in 2009 and that hasn’t changed, by bringing together our skills, time, and networks we can create the change we need.
Together, we can put pressure on our banks, councils, unions, schools and other local institutions to divest from the fossil fuel industry. And it’s happening everywhere: your local group is one of thousands across the globe, all calling on our institutions to cut their financial ties with this dirty industry.
What’s involved with local group organising? Our dedicated teams across Aotearoa organise local events, activities and climate actions. This could involve everything from banner painting, outreach, and social media, to getting behind the megaphone on the day. There’s a place for everyone and we strive to make sure everyone’s skills and talents are valued. We also provide opportunities to up-skill, so make sure you let us know what you’re interested in – whether you’re an expert or completely new to all of this!
Aaron Packard Co-founder of 350 Aotearoa and Board Chairperson
Aaron was the founder of 350 Aotearoa in 2008 and went on to set up 350.org across the Pacific Islands and Australia. He hails from Wellington where he now works as the Global Projects Manager for 350.org.
Matheson has been involved in the divestment movement since 2013 and has been a board member since 2014. He has worked with New Zealand churches and Fossil Free UoA to campaign for divestment from fossil fuels. He has a day job as a political philosopher at the University of Auckland. Matheson is married to a paediatrician and has two young boys.
Barry has campaigned on climate change since 1991 with allies globally, in the Pacific and New Zealand. He was co-chair of the Global Campaign for Climate Action, CEO of Oxfam New Zealand, and a Green Party list MP in 2016-17. He is an economist with a Masters from Yale University. He has recently founded a new charity, Mindful Money, which provides ethical and fossil free investment alternatives to New Zealand KiwiSaver investors.
Karen brings to the board 20 years’ experience of delivery and operational management in the private and NGO sectors, including IT and project management. She is a passionate believer in sustainable change and loves to drag her kids along to climate actions whenever possible. She is the Operations Manager of Mindful Money, on the board of Ooooby and her local school, the co-founder of community organisation Love Titirangi, and a keen musician and veggie gardener.