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'Do The Math' documentary tackles climate change on Earth Day

Just in time for Earth Day, Bill McKibben’s “Do the Math” documentary will be shown Sunday at three Portland-area locations.

The movie will show at Ecotrust in the Pearl District, at Trillium Charter School in North Portland, and in Tigard Sunday evening, April 21.

Earth Day is on Monday, April 22.

In November, McKibben made Portland his first stop on his national “Do the Math” tour.

The founder of the nonprofit 350.org has sparked a nationwide fossil fuel divestment movement at colleges and universities and inspired new protests against the industry.

“ 'Do The Math' refers to the simple and terrifying new reality of the climate crisis: the fossil fuel industry currently has 2,795 gigatons of carbon in their reserves, five times more than the maximum 565 gigatons the world can emit and keep warming below 2 degrees Celsius, a goal agreed to by nearly every nation on earth, including the United States," McKibben says.

He goes further to charge that "the fossil fuel industry is now a rogue industry, willing to pour five times more carbon into the atmosphere than even the most conservative governments think is safe. They're outlaws against the laws of physics."

McKibben's grassroots activism group, 350.org, refers to a climate change target: "To preserve our planet, scientists tell us we must reduce the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere from its current level of 392 parts per million to below 350 ppm," according to the group.

In 2007, 350.org began a campaign called "Step It Up" that organized 2,000 rallies in all 50 United States. The organization says its events — from skiers descending a melting glacier to divers hosting an underwater action — helped convince political leaders to adopt their call to action of cutting carbon 80 percent by 2050.

Since 2008, the group has taken Step It Up to a global level, with members making 5,200 "actions" in 181 countries on Oct. 24, 2009.

On Oct. 10, 2010, 350.org hosted a Global Work Party, with 7,000 climate solutions projects around the world.

Last year, the group focused on the need to move beyond fossil fuels. On May 5, 2012, Climate Impacts Day, the group drew a connection between climate change and extreme weather.


Event details

Monday’s event at Ecotrust (921 N.W. Ninth Ave.) kicks off at 5:30 p.m. with a meet-and-greet; at 6 p.m. a series of speakers will talk about climate change challenges and actions being taken in the city and region. The movie will start at 7 p.m., with a discussion to follow. A donation of $3 is suggested.

The Trillium Charter School event (5420 N. Interstate Ave.) starts at 6:30 p.m.

The Tigard event (The Walnut Room, 14325 S.W. 97th Ave.) starts at 7 p.m.

Tickets are available at www.dothemathmoviepdx.eventbrite.com.

For more: 350.org/en/math.