Politicians, scientists, and environmental activists will gather next week in Copenhagen as world leaders try to hammer out a new climate deal. Joining them will be Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu, the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, all the Norwegian Bishops, the Moderator of The United Church of Canada and many others. Why are religious leaders attending these highly technical talks? The United Church of Canada’s Moderator Mardi Tindal and former MP David MacDonald posted an open letter to explain.
“Science tells us what is and, given certain parameters, what will come to be. Spiritual values teach us what ought to be. Only the two, working together, can see us safely through this perilous time.
For example, scientific estimates tell us that by 2050 as many as 200 million people may become permanently displaced by rising sea levels and other effects of climate change. How we respond to this will be determined by our values as human beings and by the kind of future we decide to shape. These are spiritual questions….
“Our climate change discussions so far have tended to be dominated by economic and political considerations. These are important, but they are not sufficient. It is vital that people of faith participate to ensure future-shaping decisions are not determined only by short-term considerations, such as what is least costly or most expedient…
“Canada is in a unique situation,” they conclude. “While we are no longer a leader in climate change policies, we do have an enormous stake in the results. As the country with the largest land mass and the longest shoreline on three oceans, how the nations of the planet determine an agreement in Copenhagen is crucial to our future. Canada needs to take on targets in Copenhagen to minimize the impacts of climate change on communities here and abroad.”
LINK HERE FOR THE FULL LETTER.