Tiempo Climate Cyberlibrary
American Evangelicals and Climate change
About the Cyberlibrary
The Tiempo Climate Cyberlibrary was developed by Mick Kelly and Sarah Granich on behalf of the Stockholm Environment Institute and the International Institute for Environment and Development, with sponsorship from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency.
While every effort is made to ensure that information on this site, and on other sites that are referenced here, is accurate, no liability for loss or damage resulting from use of this information can be accepted.
Every now and then significant encouragements emerge from unlikely places. In early February, the United States National Association of Evangelicals (NAE), with 30 million members, stated that "as evangelical leaders, we recognize both our opportunity and our responsibility to offer a biblically based moral witness that can help shape public policy in the most powerful nation on earth and therefore contribute to the wellbeing of the entire world... Many of us have required considerable convincing before becoming persuaded that climate change is a real problem and that it ought to matter to us as Christians. But now we have seen and heard enough."
The statement made four claims: human-induced climate change is real; the consequences of climate change will be significant and will hit the poor the hardest; Christian moral convictions demand our response; and, governments, businesses, churches and individuals all have a role to play in addressing climate change – starting now.
These claims were immediately challenged by the Interfaith Stewardship Alliance, welcoming global warming on the grounds that it will lead to increased agricultural productivity and that the poor will be the most affected by measures to mitigate climate change. Two-thirds of American evangelicals are, however, convinced that climate change is taking place, and 54 per cent believe that a person's Christian faith should encourage them to support environmental action.
The NAE accepts that "mankind has a sacred responsibility to steward the earth and not a license to abuse the creation of which we are a part." The path that led to this acceptance began in Oxford in 2002, when the John Ray Initiative hosted leading scientists, policy-makers and Christian leaders from six continents to address the growing crisis of human-induced climate change. Richard Cizik, Vice President of Government Affairs for the NAE, was present, "dragged there by Jim Ball of the Evangelical Environmental Network" (and coordinator of the What Would Jesus Drive campaign). Faced with the evidence, Cizik says he had a 'conversion' on the subject so profound that he likened it to an 'altar call'. Since then, he has worked hard to convince the us evangelical community that creation care is a core Christian responsibility. He has not been unsuccessful.
The call from the Evangelical Climate Initiative concludes, "we pledge not only to teach the truths communicated here but also to seek ways to implement the actions that follow from them. In the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, we urge all who read this declaration to join us in this effort". I can only add, "Amen".
General Electric plans to cut solar installation costs by half
Project 90 by 2030 supports South African school children and managers reduce their carbon footprint through its Club programme
Bath & North East Somerset Council in the United Kingdom has installed smart LED carriageway lighting that automatically adjusts to light and traffic levels
The United States National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the American Public Gardens Association are mounting an educational exhibit at Longwood Gardens showing the link between temperature and planting zones
The energy-efficient Crowne Plaza Copenhagen Towers hotel is powered by renewable and sustainable sources, including integrated solar photovoltaics and guest-powered bicycles
El Hierro, one of the Canary Islands, plans to generate 80 per cent of its energy from renewable sources
The green roof on the Remarkables Primary School in New Zealand reduces stormwater runoff, provides insulation and doubles as an outdoor classroom
The Weather Info for All project aims to roll out up to five thousand automatic weather observation stations throughout Africa
SolSource turns its own waste heat into electricity or stores it in thermal fabrics, harnessing the sun's energy for cooking and electricity for low-income families
The Wave House uses vegetation for its architectural and environmental qualities, and especially in terms of thermal insulation
The Mbale compost-processing plant in Uganda produces cheaper fertilizer and reduces greenhouse gas emissions
At Casa Grande, Frito-Lay has reduced energy consumption by nearly a fifth since 2006 by, amongst other things, installing a heat recovery system to preheat cooking oil