From Green Right Now Reports
Interfaith Power&Light, a coalition of religious groups that promotes stewardship of the earth and energy conservation, has organized a Global Warming Preach-In for Feb. 10-12.
The Preach-In is intended to help pastors, priests, rabbis, imams and other faith leaders educate their congregations on how to become better stewards of the earth, thereby answering God’s call to protect life on Earth and provide for continued human existence.
“Every major religion has a mandate to care for Creation. We were given natural resources to sustain us, but we were also given the responsibility to act as good stewards and preserve life for future generations,” IPL notes on its website.
To fulfill its mission, FPL, which counts some 10,000 congregations among its supporters, provides religious leaders with materials for study groups and services, such as bulletin inserts, fact sheets on climate change and information on how to reduce energy consumption and protect clean air.
For the Preach-In, IPL is offering printable Valentine’s cards that people can send to their senators, asking them to support the EPA’s enforcement of the Clean Air Act. People can also make a personal pledge to support clean air policies by signing the group’s Clean Air Promise.
To further awareness of climate change, San Francisco-based FPL urges religious followers to take these 10 actions:
2. Calculate your congregation’s carbon footprint at CoolCongregations.com
3. Conduct a home energy audit. Use thermostat settings and insulation to conserve energy with heating, hot water, and air conditioning.
4. Sign up for renewable energy from your utility. In some states there is still no renewable energy to purchase. If this is the case in your state, you can buy wind tags – vouchers to help build wind energy — from Native Energy with whom we have partnered.
5. Ask your religious leader to give a sermon on global warming.
6. Buy energy efficient home appliances and buy a fuel efficient vehicle.
7. Be an Energy Star Congregation by considering ways to improve the efficiency of your buildings and equipment and curtail unnecessary energy use. For information, call 888 STAR-YES.
8. Use a car less and walk, bike, and use mass transit more.
9. Visit our Action Center for national action items. Write, call or email your elected officials. Tell them global warming is a religious issue, that the U.S. must participate in strong and fair international agreements and adopt strong national policy. This is the most important thing you can do right now!
The group also reprints these facts from the U.S. Global Change Research Program:
- Global warming is unequivocal and primarily human-induced. The emissions from burning fossil fuels, such as oil and coal, are creating a layer of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere that acts like a blanket, trapping heat.
- Climate destabilization is underway in the United States. This is contributing to rising temperatures and chaotic weather.
- Widespread climate-related impacts are occurring now and are expected to increase. Climate changes are already affecting water, energy, transportation, agriculture, ecosystems, and health.
- Climate change will stress water resources. Water supply and demand is already altered and will continue to change. Dry regions will become drier and wet regions will become wetter.
- Crop and livestock production will be increasingly challenged. Increased heat, pests, water stress, diseases, and weather extremes will pose adaptation challenges for crop and livestock production. Plant reproduction will also be affected.
- Coastal areas are at increasing risk from sea-level rise and storm surge. Many U.S. coastal areas are at increasing risk of erosion and flooding.
- Threats to human health will increase. Health impacts of climate change are related to heat stress, waterborne diseases, poor air quality, extreme weather events, and diseases transmitted by insects.
- Climate change is happening, but the extent of the impact depends on choices we make today. The impacts of climate change during this century and beyond will be far greater and more rapid if global warming pollution continues to grow rapidly compared to scenarios in which concentrations grow more slowly.
FPL members include Episcopalians, Baptists, Methodists, Lutherans, Catholics, Jews, Unitarians, Muslims, Mennonites, Quakers and a smattering of other faiths, including a few members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and Buddhists.