Tips For Reducing Your Impact
Save Gas, Save Energy
Keep your tires properly inflated. Every pound underinflation uses 6% more gas. And tune up your car. A poorly tuned car can use 25% more gas.
Coalition Announces 2013 Feast of St. Francis Program
Building on the success of it’s 2012 Feast of St. Francis educational project on climate refugees with Sun Come Up film screenings at over 300 locations nationwide, the Coalition is pleased to announce this year’s theme “Melting Ice, Mending Creation: A Catholic Approach to Climate Change.” This year’s FOSF program will highlight the Pontifical Academy of Science’s Working Group (PAS) statement, Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene along with the photographic evidence of melting glaciers as documented by James Balog and his Extreme Ice Survey. Find out more and register your interest here.
Canadian Bishops Issue New Resource on Environment
Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) outlined eight central themes in its new resource Building a New Culture – Central Themes in Recent Church Teaching on the Environment. The eight central themes identified by the CCCB Commission for Justice and Peace are the following: our creation in God’s image; creation’s intrinsic order; the relationship of “human ecology” to environmental ecology; responsible stewardship; the morality of caring for the environment; solidarity; creation and spirituality; and necessary responses to environmental problems.
Pope Francis’ Call to Catholics: Protect Creation
Pope Francis has continued to emphasize the importance of creation care in many of his public statements. During his homily on March 19 he said: Let us protect Christ in our lives, so that we can protect others, so that we can protect creation! To highlight the on-going emphasis that Pope Francis has placed on creation care, the Coalition has published a new webpage to document the pontiff’s various statements on creation.
Pope Francis Embraces Care for Creation/Care for the Poor
From his election on March 13th through his inauguration mass on March 19th, Pope Benedict, in gestures, symbols and words, made it clear that his leadership of the Roman Catholic Church will have a clear focus on the poor and on a greater mindfulness of the gift of God’s Creation. For an analysis of this first week, please read Fr. Drew Christiansen’s blog in America magazine.
US Bishops Urge Congress to Act on Climate Change
As chairman of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, Bishop Stephen E. Blaire of Stockton is urging the US Congress’s Bicameral Task Force on Climate Change to make a commitment to address this urgent global challenge confronting the human family and to ensure that needed climate legislation both cares for creation and protects “the least of these.” Read the entire letter here.
Coalition Issues Annual Report 2012
We are pleased to offer this catalog of the work of the Catholic Coalition on Climate Change over this past year. The Coalition shares this good news as a way to demonstrate how widely-accepted the work of the Coalition and its partners has become in the Catholic community (and indeed around the world). Read the Coalition’s Annual Report 2012. To support this work, please donate here.
Bishop of Carteret Islands Visits US
Bishop Bernard Unabali of the diocese highlighted in the film, Sun Come Up, was hosted by the Coalition for a U.S. tour to share with nine different audiences how climate change is impacting the Pacific Island region and about his pastoral plans to help relocate the Carteret Islanders to the main island of Bougainville, his diocese. The visit was all the more significant coming on the heels of Hurricane Sandy. Several good stories and blog entries reported on his visit: Archdiocese of New York blog, Catholic New Service , America Magazine, National Catholic Reporter , and Our Sunday Visitor.
20,000 Catholics Learn of Current Climate Impacts
This year over 20,000 Catholics celebrated the Feast of St. Francis (October 4) at over 300 film screening events nationwide by viewing the documentary film Sun Come Up, an academy award nominated film about climate refugees of the Carteret Islands. Participants at Catholic colleges and universities, parishes, high schools and youth groups in 42 states and the District of Columbia gained a deeper understanding of how climate change is currently impacting people halfway around the world and what can be done about it, like taking the St. Francis Pledge to Care for Creation and the Poor. Participation is not limited to the Feast of St. Francis. Find out more about these events and how to participate.
Feast of St. Francis: Nationwide Film Screening on Forced Climate Migrants
In conjunction with the Feast of St. Francis, the Catholic Coalition on Climate Change is pleased to sponsor a nation-wide screening of the Academy Award-nominated film Sun Come Up (view trailer) depicting some of the world’s first forced climate migrants, inhabitants of the Carteret Islands just north of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea. The film and accompanying materials demonstrate the important role that the Catholic Diocese of Bougainville has played in resettling some of these refugees and provides a concrete example of responding to Pope Benedict XVI’s, 2010 World Day of Peace Message: Can we remain indifferent before the problems associated with such realities as climate change . . . Can we disregard the growing phenomenon of ‘environmental refugees’…?
Learn more and download a flier about this project.
Virtue: An Approach to Sustainability
A recent article notes that while stewardship is a hallmark of Christian life, Fr. Ben Beltran recognizes the persistent problem . . . that the message of stewardship has not tipped the scales in favor of sustainability. Despite the recurrent message of the Pontiff, we’re still not doing enough . . . We lack action. In order to move more Christians to action, Fr. Beltran has begun to take a virtue-based approach to sustainability. The strategy, Fr. Beltran said, is to make environmental preservation a personal mission. Rather than insist on the message that the destruction of Mother Nature is immoral, we need to rephrase the question into: What kind of a person are you to do this on purpose? Read more here.
Alaska Bishop Highlights Dramatic Climate Change
In his editorial entitled Our environmental challenge (05.13.12), Bishop Edward J. Burns of Juneau, writes about the consequences of climate change in his state. Reflecting on the privilege of visiting [t]he majesty and beauty of the Mendenhall Glacier, Bishop Burns recalls that just a year ago the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of Science published its report on the causes and consequences of the retreat of mountain glaciers and the impact of climate change on the natural environment and human society. Read more here.
Powerful U.S. Bishops/United Methodist Church Statement Marks Earth Day
The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) and the United Methodist Church (UMC) marked Earth Day 2012 with the release a joint statement on the Eucharist and the environment. The statement, Heaven and Earth are Full of Your Glory, affirms that both Methodists and Catholics believe their celebration of the Eucharist helps them to see God’s glory in all of creation and therefore leads to greater care for the environment.
Read entire statement here.
Timeless USCCB Energy Policy Statement Offers Guidance for Today
Did you know that 31 years ago this month, the US Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Social Development and World Peace (now called the Committee for Justice Peace and Human Development) issued a statement on energy? In the midst of the energy crisis or that time, the bishops of that committee approved what continues to be a very prophetic and highly relevant statement on a variety of issues concerning the extraction, production, use of fossil fuel energy and the hope for renewable sources of energy. In an era of climate change and current ongoing debates about our energy choices, we highly recommend that you read this document and apply its teaching to these debates. To read the document online, click here.
Facing Climate Change Seriously
In response to the on-going moral and ethical challenges of climate change, both America Magazine and Commonweal Magazine featured climate change as the cover story in their respective current issues. In Climate for Change: What the Church Can Do About Global Warming, Xavier theology professor Elizabeth Groppe considers the moral dimensions of climate change and how the Catholic Church can serve as a catalyst for change which more fully cares for God’s Creation and the poor. As Groppe says, Our imperiled planet needs the distinctive paschal witness that the Catholic community can offer. In Commonweal‘s article, “Global Suicide Pact:” Why Don’t We Take Climate Change Seriously? , Creighton theology professor Richard W. Miller maintains that [w]e have a moral responsibility to join together in our communities—universities, hospitals, parishes, dioceses—and communicate to our elected leaders (and to businesses that fund opposition to climate legislation) that we do not intend to be complicit, through silence, in the mass death of human populations and the mass extinction of species.
Climate Impacts Hitting Africans Hard
As scientists have been saying, Africa will be particularly hard-hit by climate change. Their sober predictions are today being felt in the Horn of Africa. U.S. Catholic reports that dramatically changing and unpredictable weather patterns create food stresses and climate change-induced drought is forcing farmers to abandon centuries-long practices defined by distinct agricultural seasons. In light of these food challenges, [t]he Ethiopian Catholic Church has convened regional meetings on climate change and has worked with its partners such as [Coalition member] Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and the Church’s Caritas network to initiate humanitarian projects focused on food security. A recent Catholic News Service story helps personalize the struggles of many in Africa experiencing the impacts of climate change.