About SFU 350
SFU350 is a student-run climate action club operating on the unceded territories of the səl̓ilw̓ətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh), kʷikʷəƛ̓əm (Kwikwetlem), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish) and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) Nations, on which SFU Burnaby is located. We have been active at SFU Burnaby since 2013 and operate under the regulations and guidelines of the Simon Fraser Student Society (SFSS). We are known as “SFU350” because 350ppm of CO2 represents the safe amount of carbon dioxide for our atmosphere. Currently, we sit at over 400ppm of CO2.
The club started with a student-led divestment campaign. This campaign called on SFU to divest their financial holdings invested in companies that extract, refine, and transport fossil fuels (i.e. coal, oil, and natural gas). Through numerous initiatives, including but not limited to, presentations to treasury, faculty, the Board of Governors, student funds BEAM and SIAS, and students, research on the financial justification for divestment, and direct actions including student-focused rallies, SFU350 finally completed their divestment campaign with an SFU announcement of full divestment by 2025 in November 2021.
Besides divestment, SFU350 has drafted and presented a climate emergency declaration open letter to the Board of Governors on decarbonization, divestment and reinvestment, a climate hub, education, raising awareness and amplifying, and climate justice. The Board of Governors has since declared a climate emergency and acknowledged alignment with our recommendations thanks to our advocacy and the advocacy of supportive faculty, unions, and students at SFU.
What makes them changemakers?
SFU350 is dedicated to creating meaningful impacts through various campaigns. By directly lobbying those in positions of power, SFU350 has generated impetus for positive change at the highest level. The club ensures equity, sustainability, and Indigenous sovereignty are centered in all campaigns, and has a dedicated working group active with the express purpose of advocating for climate justice.
Past campaigns have achieved the declaration of a climate emergency from SFU’s Board of Governors; the full divestment of SFU from all financial holdings invested in fossil fuel extraction, refinement, and transportation companies; and the acknowledgement of alignment between SFU’s goals and SFU350’s open letter demands. These milestones were achieved through many months, and even years, of student advocacy – with support being garnered among a multitude of SFU community members and stakeholders. However, SFU350 was the driving organization responsible for initiating this support and lobbying SFU.
SFU350 also remains a dynamic group on campus, with multiple in-progress campaigns focused on issues ranging from the implementation of climate education at the university to advocacy against the Trans Mountain Expansion project. In the spirit of collaboration, these campaigns develop alongside other groups on campus – such as Embark Sustainability, ChangeSFU, and SFU’s own Sustainability Office.
Group nominations require a Faculty of Environment student to be identified to receive the award and represent the group. Liam Mackay from the Environmental Science program was nominated to represent SFU350.
Emma Chong | BA, Archaeology, Geography Minor, and GIS Certificate
Emma is a third year Archaeology Major with a minor in Geography and the GIS Certificate. Emma is part of the A.S.S. as the interdepartmental rep, a leader in the Student Leadership Team for the Faculty of Environment, and part of the Jazz Band. While Emma is an active volunteer, she also has completed a co-op position at the Port Moody Station Museum.
What makes the nominee a changemaker?
Emma is an avid community member. She is an active volunteer who shares her story as an Archaeology student. Emma is an excellent example of a student who brings "more than you think" with her ability to communicate what students could study with Archaeology. At many new/future student events, Emma has helped introduce areas of study that are new to people. You can find Emma at nearly every event around the faculty, being an integral community member that has valuable impact on campus life.
Kristin Oliver | MA, Archaeology
In Kristin's own words:
"I am a second-generation Canadian of British and Danish heritage who has the privilege of working with the K'ómoks First Nation during my degree and the Stó:lo First Nation during my day job. My favorite part about archaeology is using the techniques as tools for conservation. When I'm not doing archaeology you can find me puttering around the garden with the dog and chickens."
What makes Kristin a changemaker?
Already a very engaged and involved undergraduate in the ARCH program, Kristin has been working with Indigenous nations as part of her CRM training. More recently, as an MA student, Kristin, together with ARCH Manager Merrill Farmer, has spearheaded a successful CRM career event for ARCH Majors in February 2022. Her desire to decolonize the discipline saw her doing work for the Sto:lo nation, as well as collaborating on initiatives relevant to Indigenous representation and advancement alongside the program's graduate Chair, Dr. Dana Lepofsky.