Christians Respond to U.N. Climate Change Report
On Monday the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its Fifth Assessment Report warning that the effects of climate change are spreading to every corner of the world. For better or worse, Christian groups have been quick to respond.
“[C]limate impacts have and will continue to hit the poor the hardest, those least able to cope with the consequences, especially children and the elderly. Pro-life Christians should be especially concerned about what these conclusions will mean for young children and the unborn. Pollution impacts young children and even developing children in utero,” the Rev. Mitch Hescox, president and CEO of the Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN), warned in a statement shared with The Christian Post on Monday.
“There will be whole peoples who will be unable to adapt to the way we are polluting God’s creation. Especially those living on some Island nations and those in parts of the world where adaptation will be too expensive to implement,” he added. “Christians have a responsibility to know the stories of those who are and will be impacted by climate change throughout the world and where possible intervene.”
The EEN is urging Christians to set aside this Thursday, April 3rd, 2014 for the first National Day of Prayer for Climate Action. The National Day of Prayer for Climate Action is sponsored by Young Evangelicals for Climate Action, the EEN, and Renewal: Students Caring for Creation.
“We can now see the impacts of climate disruption growing in our country and all over the world. This is a moral issue that requires our church and political leaders to wake up and step up,” said Ben Lowe, the Young Evangelicals for Climate Action’s national spokesperson.
“The decisions they make today affect not just the present, but also the rest of my generation’s future. As young evangelicals, we’re praying that our leaders will seize this opportunity to protect life, care for the poor, and create healthy communities, clean energy, better jobs, and a more stable climate that allows us to flourish.”
Unfortunately, not all Christian groups have reacted with such urgency. E. Calvin Beisner, founder and national spokesman for Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation, also noted to the Christian Post on Tuesday, “What most people won’t know but is crucial is that the amount of warming to be expected from increased CO2 is turning out to be much less than the IPCC has anticipated for the last 25 years.”
Genesis 1:31 and 8:22, he noted, show that “an infinitely wise God designed, an infinitely powerful God created, and an infinitely faithful God sustains the earth. Scientific ‘conclusions’ change all the time; the Word of the Lord stands sure forever.”
Although the Cornwall Alliance puts forward a hopeful message many may want to believe, the group has been linked to big oil companies like ExxonMobil and conservative groups. Their repeated attempt to play politics with creation calls into question their message. Unfortunately, for all of us who will be affected by climate change, the Cornwall Alliance represents the worst of the Christian reaction to the IPCC report.
If you are interested in participating in EEN’s day of prayer check out their helpful toolkit.
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News Source: Christian Post