Feature | March 21, 2023
Women leading climate action through agriculture, education, and health
On March 9, Project Drawdown’s Drawdown Lift program hosted a lively discussion with the Clean Cooking Alliance about how women are leading on climate action and climate justice and implementing solutions that strengthen adaptation, boost human well-being, and mitigate future emissions. As a continuation of International Women’s Day, we embraced equity, focusing on two of the most defining challenges of our time—climate change and poverty. Watch the recording here. Advancing gender equality is central to ensuring that our global community thrives and addresses the climate crisis. Women are problem solvers and central to guiding the world to reach drawdown, boosting resilience, and creating systemic change. Women must be represented in all levels of decision-making, and our agency—as leaders, activists, educators, and entrepreneurs—should not be underestimated. We also acknowledge our allies who continue to ensure that we have a seat at the table and that our voices are heard and valued. Moderated by Wanjira Mathai, community builder and managing director of Africa & Global Partnerships with World Resources Institute, the event featured four amazing panelists who shared wisdom and tangible examples from the fields of agriculture, education, clean cooking, health, and climate justice. Panelists included: Makandi Laiboni, leader of the digital team for One Acre Fund’s Kenya’s program, Tupande, which designs and implements the organization’s digital vision and strategy directly for smallholder farmers. Natasha Lwanda, the former national chairperson of the CAMFED Association, who uses her intimate experience of poverty and exclusion to support vulnerable young women and girls to become influential change-makers in Zambia. Patience Alifo, the co-founder of Econexus Ventures Limited, a Ghanaian-based biotechnology social enterprise commercializing sustainable biofuel and waste-to-energy production in Africa. Sohanur Rahman, the chief executive of a youth-led organization called Protiki Jubi Sangsad, or Bangladesh Model Youth Parliament, who also coordinates the largest youth network, YouthNet for Climate Justice, in Bangladesh. Each panelist had a different reason for why they were inspired to do the work they do, including experiencing extreme weather events and gender inequality firsthand, identifying major gender gaps that could lead to a pathway to prosperity, or advancing their personal commitments to give back to the community. We know that climate change threatens decades of progress and exacerbates pre-existing inequities—particularly in countries most vulnerable to climate change who have contributed the least to it—but solutions are at hand. Building off Project Drawdown’s Climate-Poverty Connections report, panelists spoke to several of the 28 mitigation solutions that also substantially contribute to boosting human well-being, strengthening resilience, and alleviating poverty.
News | March 13, 2023
How the gaming industry can tackle the climate crisis
The private sector has a big role to play in implementing climate action. The solutions we need are not the flashy fixes we often see portrayed as panaceas: While things like offsets and carbon removal technologies play a role, they can be scientifically unsound and untimely. Instead, the private sector must focus on real, strategic, and systemic impact that goes beyond reducing their own emissions. The Drawdown-Aligned Business Framework provides valuable guidance for doing just that, bringing to light the political, social, and human capital businesses have to help the world achieve zero emissions. And now a good thing has gotten even better: With the help of business partner Unity, a real-time gaming development platform, and a working group of key industry experts, we’re proud to release Project Drawdown’s first industry-specific resource for climate action: A Drawdown-Aligned Framework for the Gaming Industry.
Profile | February 23, 2023
Drawdown Science profile: James Gerber
This article is the third in a series introducing the members of Project Drawdown’s new science team. James Gerber is a data scientist with expertise in agriculture, impacts of land use on the environment, modeling of crop yields, and ocean wave energy. He uses various analytic techniques to assess the effect of climate mitigation solutions in the land use sector. As a researcher with the Institute on the Environment at the University of Minnesota, James studied connections among agriculture, ecosystems, climate, and food security. He was a lead author for the Sixth Assessment Report of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and has consulted on a wide variety of projects for nongovernmental organizations, including The Nature Conservancy, The Packard Foundation, and The World Bank. Before he started researching land use, James worked on optimizing conversion of wave energy to electricity. He holds a Ph.D. in physics from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Here, James explains how he got from wave physics to climate change mitigation, trash talks American drivers, avoids sharing his favorite drawdown solution, and nails the answer to the most important question ever asked. Q: When people ask what you do with Project Drawdown, what do you tell them? A: I haven't been here very long, so my answer is based on what I think I’ll be doing and why I was so excited to get this job. Project Drawdown is really focused on making solutions happen. For the last 13 years I’ve been in a somewhat academic world defining what problems are in the land use sector, particularly with agriculture, and showing how big the impact is and looking at what some solutions could look like and what sectors and regions they could be most effective in, but those were not necessarily actionable. What I’m excited about at Project Drawdown is taking the next step and helping to formulate those solutions in a way they can really easily be implemented to achieve climate and other goals at the same time. Q: What do you see as the biggest obstacles to solving climate change? A: In some ways people don’t realize how doable it is. There are so many things out there that are win-wins and will pay for themselves and have all sorts of good co-benefits, and people aren’t aware of that. So a lack of knowledge, and maybe a little bit of pessimism that goes along with that. Also, there are often vested interests in keeping things the way they are. There’s no lobby for industries that don't yet exist, but there are lobbies for things that society might want to sunset. So there’s this knowledge problem and there’s this momentum problem as well. Q: What’s your superpower? A: I feel like I'm a pretty good programmer, in that I think I come up with clever algorithms to solve data analysis issues. Q: What is the best (or worst) experience you’ve had that involved a bicycle? A: I did my junior year in southern France. I was super poor, so I took a bicycle out of the trash and started biking around. I was pulling on the handlebars and peddling, and all of a sudden one handlebar fell off. I turned into traffic next to me and fell over—I thought I was going to be squashed. In America I might have been, but French drivers are really good. This guy slammed on his brakes and did not hit me. Q: What was the subject of your Ph.D. dissertation? A: Acoustic propagation through internal waves in the ocean. Q: And how did you get from there to here? A: I did my postdoctoral work on wave theory in Paris, then we moved for my wife’s job to Princeton. I was offered a postdoctoral position at Princeton in Environmental Science, and I was offered a job at a small startup doing ocean wave energy. I felt the world did not need another postdoc but I could make a difference with wave energy so I took the job in renewable energy. Later, when we moved to Minnesota, I wanted to stay in an environmental field so I took a position at the Institute on the Environment at the intersection of environment and agriculture. Moving to Project Drawdown is a logical next step in the trajectory of my career from siloed technical work to impact-focused and policy-relevant. I really think I can have an impact here. Q: What’s your favorite Drawdown Solution and why? A: It’s hard to choose a favorite. It’s like asking which is my favorite child. Can I get back to you on that one? Q: Speaking of favorite children, any advice for parenting young adults? A: Find a balance between having the current and future versions of your child angry at you. Q: What gives you hope? A: The fact that even though there is pessimism out there, we’re really making progress as a society and I think the word is getting out there. There are all sorts of examples of entities that have decreased their carbon footprint while improving quality of life. There are so many technologies that are coming online right now. Miracles are not needed; we just need to implement what we have. Together, these give me hope. Q: What is the answer to life, the universe, and everything? A: 42. Come on.
Feature | February 15, 2023
Unlock your inner climate superhero
Drawdown’s Neighborhood, presented by Project Drawdown, is a series of short documentaries featuring the stories of climate solutions heroes, city by city. We are extremely excited to share with you that following the 2022 release of episodes profiling Pittsburgh and Atlanta, the series’ third edition—“Drawdown’s Neighborhood: Twin Cities”—is now available online! Join host and Project Drawdown director of storytelling and engagement Matt Scott as he passes the mic to nine climate heroes whose stories often go unheard, and elevates climate action—and stories about careers, race, gender, sexuality, mental health, personal and community resilience, family, and more—in the process. The series’ third round of documentary shorts showcases Minnesota’s Twin Cities, located on the ancestral, traditional, and contemporary Native lands of the Dakota and Anishinaabe People. While Minneapolis and St. Paul are renowned for their vibrant arts scene, rich cultural diversity, and natural beauty, they are also home to a robust ecosystem of people and organizations deeply committed to working on climate solutions. In the targets outlined in its current climate action plan, the City of Minneapolis is aiming by 2025 to cut down greenhouse gas emissions by nearly one-third, generate 10 percent of electricity from renewable sources, and increase rates of recycling, composting, and bicycle commuting. Meanwhile, St. Paul's current climate action and resilience plan aims to have all city operations be carbon neutral by 2030 with further plans for the entire city to go carbon neutral by 2050 through greater use of natural infrastructure and implementation of a wide range of green-friendly initiatives. “Drawdown’s Neighborhood: Twin Cities” profiles local climate superheroes who are helping fuel progress in pursuit of these goals to help lay the foundation for a healthy, just, and vibrant future for all. Day in and day out, each of the interviewees are doing their part to help the world reach drawdown—the future point when levels of greenhouse gases start to steadily decline. And each story serves as a bridge between climate solutions and people like you looking to tap into their own superpowers to stop climate change. The Drawdown’s Neighborhood short documentaries touch on a range of themes used to inspire action. Themes include pathways to climate careers; collaboration across silos, including geographies, sectors, and ideologies; diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice; hope and opportunity; individual action paired with systems change; and personal and community resilience. The nine stories from the Twin Cities center the voices of women, Black people, people of color, immigrants, and others who are often not represented in the climate dialogue and yet are commonly most immediately and severely vulnerable to the impacts of climate catastrophe. You will be inspired to discover your own climate superpower with Bob Blake, a member of Minnesota’s Red Lake Tribal Band of Ojibwe Indians whose vision and leadership is advancing the region’s renewable energy transition while empowering tribal nations to lead the way toward a clean energy future. Put yourself in the driver’s seat on the road to a greener future with Yesenia Robles Pelayo, who manages fleet logistics for a non-profit all-electric community car share program while working directly with community members who might otherwise not have access to affordable, climate-friendly transportation. Turbocharge your pursuit of climate justice with Emily Mauter, whose work with Repowered—one of the most prominent collectors of e-waste in Minnesota—is not only creating new opportunities for electronics through increased recycling, but also providing workforce development and reintegration opportunities for people who have experienced incarceration. The series also includes: Jose Alvillar Hinojosa, Statewide Director of Youth Programs with Unidos MN Whitney Terrill, Former Environmental Justice Program Manager with Minnesota Interfaith Power & Light Alboury Ndiaye, Sustainability Specialist with the Waste Wise Foundation Crispin (Cris) Phillips, Urban Agriculture Manager for Appetite for Change Jan Hagerman, Manager of New Brighton ReStore at Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity Jothsna Harris, Founder and Principal at Change Narrative Feeling inspired? To unleash your inner climate superhero, visit Drawdown’s Neighborhood to discover solutions and take action today.
News | February 6, 2023
Major businesses praise USPS shift to electric delivery fleet
A group of major corporations led by Etsy and eBay is praising the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) for committing to exclusively purchase electric vehicles starting in 2026, in a letter coordinated by Drawdown Labs, Project Drawdown’s private-sector testing ground for accelerating the adoption of climate solutions quickly, safely and equitably. Etsy and eBay are among the largest e-commerce marketplaces in the country. The USPS is central to their business and to millions of small sellers who run their shops on these platforms. The USPS is currently transitioning to an all-new fleet of 106,000 delivery vehicles. It announced in December that 62 percent of those purchases over the next five years will have all-electric powertrains and by 2026, 100 percent of newly purchased vehicles will be electric. The letter from Etsy and eBay also includes signatories Askov Finlayson, Avocado Green, Ben & Jerry’s, Clif Bar, Dr. Bronner’s, A Good Company, Grove Collaborative, Patagonia, Peak Design, Seventh Generation, Stonyfield and Warby Parker. “This decision sends a message to every business in the United States: it is possible, achievable and necessary to adopt all-electric fleets for corporate transportation and shipping needs,” said Jamie Alexander, director of Drawdown Labs at Project Drawdown. “These companies are working hard to reduce their climate impact, and this move by the USPS enables them to address the difficult-to-abate supply chain emissions. This is good news for all involved.” With a shift to electric vehicles, the group of companies believe it will not just be good for the environment but good for business as consumers reap the benefits of lower costs and other innovations made possible by electric vehicles. The nation and the world are quickly transitioning to electric vehicles, led by consumer demand for the many benefits of EVs, including better efficiency, easier maintenance, zero emissions and better performance. That means cleaner air, reduced climate risk and improved health across the globe. Electrifying vehicles is a key climate solution, with the potential to reduce up to 9.8 gigatons of CO2-e by 2050. “For millions of small sellers and entrepreneurs on Etsy, a modern USPS committed to innovation and sustainability is crucial for the vibrancy of their small and micro businesses,” said Chelsea Mozen, senior director of impact & sustainability at Etsy. “The USPS’s commitment to a robust electric delivery fleet is good for the postal service, good for small businesses and good for America.” “USPS’s commitment to electric vehicles is great news for small businesses like the many on our platform who rely on USPS to keep their business moving. eBay is proud to support this move toward greater sustainability and a cleaner world,” said eBay chief sustainability officer Renée Morin.
Video | January 30, 2023
TEDxBoston: The Drawdown Roadmap
Project Drawdown has used rigorous science to identify and characterize nearly 100 practices and technologies that, if ambitiously implemented together, can achieve drawdown—the point when levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere start to steadily decline, thereby stopping catastrophic climate change. Now, how do we scale them? The Drawdown Roadmap is a science-based framework to strategically and effectively deploy these powerful climate solutions in order to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. The roadmap takes into account how opportunity for reduction is distributed across sectors, the relative cost (or financial benefit) of the various solutions, and where and when each might most effectively be implemented. In this TEDxBoston presentation, Project Drawdown executive director Jonathan Foley introduces the Drawdown Roadmap and outlines how this new plan for prioritizing climate action across sectors, time, and geography can “really drive change on climate change” while there’s still time. Watch “The Drawdown Roadmap: A Science-based Framework to Accelerate Climate Solutions" now.
Video | January 24, 2023
How to make your job a climate job
Would you like your work to help alleviate the climate crisis, even though “climate” is not part of your current position description? In this webinar, sponsored by Climate People, presenters offer actionable advice on how you can reduce the threat of climate change, wherever you are and whatever you do for a living. Presenters: Aiyana Bodi, senior associate, Drawdown Labs Adam Braun, co-founder and CEO of Climate Cluib Ben Lai, senior software developer and employee Green Team lead at LinkedIn Kristy Drutman, co-founder of Browngirl Green
Profile | January 24, 2023
Drawdown Science profile: Yusuf Jameel
This article is the third in a series introducing the members of Project Drawdown’s new science team. Yusuf Jameel joined Project Drawdown in 2021 as a research manager for Drawdown Lift. In January 2023 he transitioned to the Drawdown Science team as associate scientist, data science. A multidisciplinary scientist with experience in water resources, public health, data analytics, and science communication, he’s passionate about finding solutions to climate change and bridging the gap between scientists, policymakers, and the public. Yusuf obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Utah. Please welcome Yusuf as he shares his thoughts on growing up on the banks of the Ganges River, enhancing human well-being through the adoption of climate solutions, porcupine hair, and more. Q: When people ask you what you do with Project Drawdown, what do you tell them? A. As a member of the science team, I work on climate solutions using my experience in data analysis, especially on solutions that also address the food–energy–water nexus. I also work on translating the science in a way that makes it widely accessible. Q: Of all of the things you could be doing, why did you choose to join Project Drawdown? A: Project Drawdown is on a mission to actually address the biggest problem the world is facing today, climate change. I was really impressed by the book. It was the first to lay out that yes, we can address climate change—it's not just about gloom and doom, it’s also about opportunity. Project Drawdown addresses climate in a way that’s multidimensional, promotes the best science, addresses the different audiences, and passes the mic. That really motivates me. Q: What do you consider some of the biggest obstacles to implementing and scaling up climate solutions? A: First is unlocking the finance to fund climate solutions globally. We need capital from the private sector, from banks divesting from fossil fuels, and we need to invest in green solutions. Another challenge is politics. We need to think more altruistically. This is a global challenge requiring everyone to join hands, yet it has not been the case so far. The good news is, public perception is changing. Hopefully politics will change, and more capital will be funneled into climate solutions. Q: OK, time for a break. What’s your favorite food? A: I would go with my comfort food, and that’s biryani. It’s a big tradition in South Asian countries, and if you ask anyone in India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh, biryani is probably one of the top dishes. It’s not the healthiest dish, but it’s just so comforting. Q: I’m sure you have many, but can you tell us about one superpower you bring to this job? A: I’m a jack of all trades. Whether it’s high-level thinking, brainstorming ideas, or actually doing the work, I’m comfortable doing it all. I’m also adaptable. If a situation requires me to step up and take the lead I can, or I can step back and follow. Q: What's a childhood experience that relates to the work you're doing today? A: I grew up on the banks of the River Ganges. Every now and then there would be flooding. As a result, many people would go through an annual cycle of losing crops and be entrenched in a cycle of poverty, unable to get out. This had a profound effect on me. When I started reading about climate change and seeing flooding events become more and more intense, I recognized the need to address climate and development holistically. Q: What’s your favorite Drawdown Solution? A: There are so many of them! I really like Distributed Solar Photovoltaics and Reduced Food Waste, but my favorite is Clean Cooking. I think that solution can revolutionize the lives of billions of people in the world, especially young girls. It not only addresses climate but also vastly improves health, addresses gender equality, and opens up economic opportunities. If we can implement clean cooking and distributed solar, we’ll see huge changes in the lives of billions of people globally. Q: Time for another break. If you were a nonhuman animal, what animal would you be? A: As a kid I had short hair that was like vertical hair, as if I had had an electric shock. So many of my friends called me Porcupine. People would rub my hair all the time as it felt like velvet. Now I keep my hair long. Q: What gives you hope? A: I derive my hope from two things. First, we’re rapidly advancing technology—a lot of people from across the world are putting their effort into finding and implementing the best and most important solutions to address climate change. Second, when I was at COP27, I saw that young people are really leading the movement. That gives me hope that we can do meaningful work on this very important but challenging issue. Q: Anything else you’d like to share? A: I like nature. I especially like mountains. This is something I realized very late in life, maybe because I grew up in cities with very little nature around. When I moved to Utah, I started going to the mountains. I realized how peaceful and how nice it is, and I can’t not talk about it. As human societies are getting more urbanized, a lot of us, especially young people who live in large metropolises, are cut off from nature. And I hope they reconnect with nature. We need to appreciate nature and biodiversity much more than we do. Once it’s gone, it’s not coming back. We need to love it, respect it, and protect it.
Profile | January 17, 2023
Drawdown Science profile: Amanda Smith
This article is the second in a series introducing the members of Project Drawdown’s new science team. Amanda D. Smith, Ph.D., joined Drawdown Science as senior scientist, built environment, in December 2022. Amanda is a researcher and analyst with expertise in building science and energy systems modeling. Her professional career includes academic, national laboratory, and industry positions. Most recently, she served as senior energy analyst at SOCOTEC USA. She received her doctorate from Mississippi State University. Here, Amanda shares her thoughts on, among other things, the intersection of climate solutions and the built environment, life as the daughter of a nuclear engineer, and the ideal weekend. Q: When people ask you what you do with Project Drawdown, what do you tell them? A: I’m bringing more perspective on buildings and energy systems into Project Drawdown: how buildings consume energy; how large-scale energy systems work and interact with the economy, the environment, and the other human-built systems they're providing services for. I’m looking at all of that through a lens of climate solutions and improving the human experience in the world. Through research, outreach, and education, hopefully we’ll get the word out about the climate solutions that are ready to go and help people evaluate which to implement. Q: Of all of the things you could be doing, why did you choose to join the Drawdown Science team? A: The mission really speaks to me. When the Drawdown book first came out, I had personally been discouraged by feeling like we as humans were very comfortable using resources and not valuing the planet and our fellow humans with less access to those resources. The book was inspiring, and the question was practical: We know we need to get to drawdown, so how can we do this? At Project Drawdown I have freedom to do academic research. I have opportunities to teach people. But I’m part of a small team. I feel like we’re nimble and creative, and there is a focus to our work. Even though the things we’re doing are so different, it essentially comes back to one shared vision. Q: What are some of the biggest obstacles to solving climate change, and how does your work with Project Drawdown address them? A: A lot of the obstacles are in perspectives and attitudes. I hope I can bring a wider perspective by asking questions like, “Why are we building things the way we are?” “Why are we using resources the way we are?” We have technologies that can help with this, and we should be deploying them quickly and strategically. On the technical side, we tend to look to adding more technology to “fix” issues with how our buildings affect the environment. But what I want to make sure is out in the public awareness is that there is a lot of knowledge in building science we want to take advantage of, not just new technology, and simplicity has a lot of value. For example, using best practices for designing and constructing the building envelope (like the Insulation solution) means we need less mechanical equipment to keep the building comfortable for the people inside (like the High-Efficiency Heat Pumps solution). This can also make building management simpler, conserve resources, and boost the building’s resilience to extreme weather or power outages. Q: Everybody has a superpower. What’s yours? A: Being a systems thinker—being able to ask questions outside of my discipline or go beyond the original question asked. It probably came from having a mom who was a science teacher and who encouraged me to ask questions. Q: What's a childhood toy or experience that relates to the work you're doing today? I grew up in Russellville, Arkansas. We have a nuclear plant in our hometown, and my dad worked there as a nuclear engineer. I actually got to visit the site as a kid, pre-9/11, and he talked to me about his job. You can see some of the plant’s interactions with the environment. There’s a cooling tower visible from miles away that is evaporating water drawn from the river as part of the plant’s cooling system—to a child it’s a big cloud-maker. Growing up with someone who was a power plant engineer gave me the understanding from a young age that the electricity I’m using is coming from somewhere. I don’t look at a wall socket and assume the electricity magically appears; I have always known that so much happened before that electricity got to the building. Q: If you could eat lunch with any famous person, living or dead, who would it be? A: If I can have two, I’d have lunch with Alan Watts and Chungliang Al Huang. It would be amazing to witness their interactions and get to ask questions. Their writing has changed my thinking on science, technology, intelligence, and what it means to cooperate with the natural world and recognize yourself as part of it. Q: What’s your favorite drawdown solution? A: My favorite solution actually isn’t classified as a buildings solution: It’s Plant-Rich Diets. I love eating vegan food, and I feel good about how it affects me, the broader animal community, and the wider world. Q: What gives you hope? A: A lot gives me hope. I feel like the conversation has shifted well beyond, “Is climate change happening? Should we change what we’re doing?” to a more complex conversation. We have work from Project Drawdown and lots of other places to show that there are effective actions we can take using what we know now, and they have benefits beyond the climate. My job is to get the message out about that, and to help people understand how the technology pieces come together for a better future. Having the ability to do work that is meaningful—that gives me a lot of hope. Q: Your ideal way to spend a weekend? A: An ideal weekend includes some time in a forest, and a book, and probably a walk with the dogs or a cat on my lap.
Feature | January 6, 2023
Drawdown Stories: The year in review
In 2022, Drawdown Stories welcomed the world into a journey to “pass the mic” to the climate heroes who often go unheard and, in the process, invite people everywhere to tap into their unique “superpowers” to play a role in helping the world reach drawdown. Early in the year, I took the stage at the 2022 Planet Forward Summit, sponsored by organizations including National Geographic, Discovery, Comcast, Adobe, and Patagonia, to underscore why accelerating new, inclusive climate conversations isn’t only nice, but necessary. “I want to ask you to consider a question: As you navigate crisis, as you seek solutions, who and what are the voices that often aren’t represented in those conversations? Literally, look around you. Consider who is sitting next to you. If you’re on the livestream, consider who’s in the rooms with you or who you work with. What voices are represented, and who’s missing from those conversations? “Unfortunately, studies have shown that those most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change and the climate crisis – Black communities, Indigenous communities, communities of color, low-income communities – are also often not represented in climate conversations or in rooms like this, and that’s a huge problem. In the spirit of navigating crisis and seeking solutions, we’re not taking that sitting down; we’re doing something about it and that’s what passing the mic is all about.” Reaching drawdown as quickly, safely, and equitably as possible requires that all communities – particularly those least represented – have a seat at the table and have a part in solutions. Recognizing the task at hand, Drawdown Stories serves to spread awareness, shape attitudes, and spark action for the broader climate community, including educators and their students, as well as other future climate leaders, through storytelling and engagement. This year, we made progress in a number of ways. We centered the voices that often go unheard in the popular climate solutions dialogue. In February 2022, at the start of Black History Month, Drawdown Stories hosted a virtual launch event for our program’s guiding principle of “Climate Solutions in Color” at the annual Great Northern Festival. We were joined by Clara Kitongo, program manager at the One Tree Per Child Program at Tree Pittsburgh; Ben Passer, senior program officer, Midwest climate and energy, at McKnight Foundation; Jacqui Patterson, founder and executive director of the Chisholm Legacy Project: A Resource Hub for Black Frontline Climate Justice Leadership and former senior director of the NAACP Environmental and Climate Justice Program; and Jothsna Harris, founder of Change Narrative. Hosted live for hundreds in real time, the conversation underscored the need to welcome underrepresented voices in climate, not only to counteract historic and present disparities, but to welcome everyday “superpowers” of those who have often been left out of the conversation. We introduced the world to drawdown-aligned climate careers and solutions in action. Drawdown Labs highlights how every job can be a climate job and, through the work of Drawdown Stories in 2022, we showcased a diverse range of people in careers helping the world reach drawdown. The 20 change makers – in 20 unique roles showcasing the diversity of climate careers: Paige Anderson, project manager at the City of Pittsburgh, Department of Mobility and Infrastructure Blair Beasley, director of climate strategies at the Ray C. Anderson Foundation, working to support Drawdown Georgia Erica Cochran Hameen, PhD, architectural designer, professor, researcher, and director of diversity, equity, and inclusion at the Carnegie Mellon University School of Architecture Alexis Cromer, food operations director at 412 Food Rescue Tylesha Giddings, technical project manager at Southface Adam Hicks, field manager at Concrete Jungle Tonya Hicks, founder and CEO of Power Solutions, and Founder of Women Do Everything Kendrick Kelsey, Reuse Center associate at Lifecycle Building Center Clara Kitongo, program coordinator, One Tree Per Child, at Tree Pittsburgh Angie Martinez, senior right-of-way manager at the City of Pittsburgh, Department of Mobility and Infrastructure Demetrius Milling, worker-owner at Love is Love Cooperative Farm Veni Mittal, (former) energy audits associate at Rebuilding Together Pittsburgh / community service chair at the Green Building Alliance Tom Mulholland, senior project manager at Grounded Strategies Robin Okunowo, program coordinator at Captain Planet Foundation's Planeteer Alliance Sarah Olexsak, manager of transportation electrification at Duquesne Light Company Steve Place, horticulturist at the Kendeda Building for Innovative Sustainable Design Eri Saikawa, associate professor, Winship distinguished research professor of environmental sciences, and director of Emory Talks Climate at Emory University Shawn Taylor, crew leader at Landforce Richard Tumushime, head electrician at Energy Independent Solutions Brandon Walton, fleet manager with the City of Pittsburgh, Office of Management and Budget We equipped communities with stories and resources to spread awareness, shape attitudes, and spark action. While The Great Northern Festival was the official launch of Drawdown Stories’ work to “pass the mic,” it was later in the spring that we launched Drawdown’s Neighborhood, a climate solutions short documentary series featuring the stories of climate solutions heroes, city by city. The series began with stories from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and, in the fall, added stories from Atlanta, Georgia – centering stories of BIPOC, women, youth, and immigrant climate leaders. The Drawdown’s Neighborhood series is only beginning to achieve the impact it set out to have. To date, people from community organizations and other institutions in 30+ states have shared ways they plan to collectively engage more than 1 million people with Drawdown’s Neighborhood. Each series features learning and action resources, including offerings from ChangeX, Climate Generation, Ecochallenge.org, Solutions Journalism Network, and SubjectToClimate, as well as Project Drawdown resources like the Drawdown Labs Job Function Action Guides, Climate Solutions 101, and the Drawdown Solutions Library. We collaborated with platforms and communities alike to begin to “pass the mic.” This year, Drawdown Stories also contributed to a number of annual conferences and events hosted by Climate Generation, The Great Northern Festival, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the New England Aquarium, and Planet Forward. These collaborations resulted in tremendous reach, including downloads as part of National Geographic’s Overheard Podcast episode “The Greening of Pittsburgh” and more than 50,000 views hosting a show as part of Pinterest TV’s Climate Week show, “Real-World Climate Superheroes.” We also shared Drawdown Stories content and resources directly – through talks and workshops – with communities of the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability Education (AASHE); California State Universities; Chabot College; Children’s Climate Championship; Club of Lisbon; the Design for Empathy Podcast; The George Washington University: Grand Valley State University: the HOPE, ACT, THRIVE podcast: Mass Audubon: the Mid-Atlantic Climate Change Education Conference: Pittsburgh Youth for Climate Action (hosted by Communitopia): SEI: Stanford University: The University of Maryland: and more. Locally, with the generous support of 7 Stages Theatre and Drawdown Georgia, we also hosted the very first of many Drawdown’s Neighborhood community launch events. This launch, for Drawdown’s Neighborhood: Atlanta, welcomed 150 community members including public and private sector leaders, climate professionals, environmental justice advocates, educators, faith-based organizers, and everyday climate heroes from a wide range of locally and nationally recognized institutions. We prepared to go even further in 2023. In the second half of 2022, Drawdown Stories welcomed a new storytelling coordinator and engagement coordinator, bolstering the impact of our work community by community. In addition to preparing to feature and share more stories, we began to explore exciting partnerships and editorial collaborations that will bear fruit in 2023. As we continue to build Drawdown Stories, we are excited for the impact of our work to blossom – providing people with a better understanding of the role climate solutions can play in their local communities and the science underlying those solutions; providing people with opportunities for deeper exploration and dialogue related to climate change and climate solutions; and providing people with relatable, relevant, inclusive stories and resources that enable them to help the world reach drawdown.