An important part of 350Vermont’s mission is to tell the stories of the climate justice movement and to create connections and build community around this work. We are thrilled to present our fourth climate justice zine, Grounded: How Vermonters are cultivating transformative relationships with the land.
From people to protozoa, bats to bacteria, fir trees to fungi — all of us belong on this planet, and climate justice calls on us to build a future in which we can all flourish. For this issue of the zine, we asked Vermonters to share how they are working and relating with the land in transformative ways, how they are replacing the myth of human/nature separation and the practices of exploitation with systems and mindsets that prioritize equity, sustainability, resiliency, community, and connection with the Earth.
In this zine, you’ll read about a BIPOC community farm, invasive-caterpillar-eating chickens, an Abenaki basket maker’s relationship with the black ash tree, a city that grows food for its seniors, arboreal heat-sickness prevention, and how three artists are imagining racial justice into being, among many other stories.
Making change is exhilarating and joyful, but also uncertain and terrifying. Here at 350VT, we believe that climate justice requires spaces of nurturing, connection, and learning. Who better than families to hold those spaces and lead us through a long, intense, difficult process of growth and becoming? The Future Is Now: A Community Conversation features contributions from 350VT’s Families Rise Up: Organizing for Climate Justice (formerly Mother Up!), a network of parents across Vermont taking organized, empowered action to protect the health and safety of our collective future.
We invite you into this zine space to reflect, reimagine and re-energize. You’ll see that parents and kids all over Vermont are living out a new culture that challenges the status quo: we are learning from Indigenous wisdom, we are traveling by bike, we are building all-natural houses, we are reclaiming outdoor spaces for Black and brown people, we are teaching our children through play and creativity.
We published our first two zines, Issue 1 of Climate + COVID-19: A Community Conversation, and Issue 2 of Climate + COVID-19: A Community Conversation, in the summer and fall of 2020. Our intention was to raise awareness about the connections between the pandemic and the climate crisis, and hold space for a community dialogue, as well as connecting artists and writers and readers. We deliberately chose the word zine to evoke a messy, in-process, grassroots conversation.
These zines include perspectives on the climate and COVID experience expressed in poetry, paint, photography, prose, sculpture, and song. They serve as a sort of collective diary chronicling the grief, uncertainty, knowledge, love, outrage, and hope of the first few months of the pandemic, and the understanding that our concurrent crises have common causes — and common solutions.