Sister Pat Nagle, IHM serves as Co-Chair of Oregon Interfaith Power and Light. She is attending the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Bali, Indonesia as a member of the Delegation from the World Council of Churches.
Yesterday (Wednesday) was the opening of the high-level negotiations. This means it is the time when the heads of governments arrive and speak on the issue, and work towards decisions that will move us toward a more sustainable EARTH community. Each speaker yesterday from around the world spoke of the absolute necessity of ALL countries cooperating in the decision making process. Many spoke of being motivated by our responsibility to care for creation, the most vulnerable and future generations. It was clear, without mentioning the United States directly, that each speaker was indeed saying to the United States: you need to be a cooperative party in the negotiations.
So far, I can say that the United States has taken positions far from the key essential elements of the framework: transfer of technology to developing countries to assist in adapting to climate change; and adaptation — that is the allocation of funds for developing countries. Climate Action Network, an excellent international educational, lobbying organization says: “the US said technology needs an assessment to ‘figure out what the situation is in developing countries and the US rejects ‘sufficient, predictable and additional funding’ to assist developing countries as they adapt to climate change. Also the US has said that this Conference is “not a sustainable development convention.”
Senator John Kerry was here this week and speaks of the movement on the local levels in the US to adopt the Kyoto Protocol and also the support that is emerging from the private sector to urge the US government to set definite emission reduction target numbers (also opposed by the US). Today, Al Gore will speak.
With all the disappointment in our US government, I have great hope when I meet folks from around the world who appreciate what the “locals”are doing in the US. with their efforts and ours…from organizations like IPL, we will continue our work for a healthier, more sustainable EARTH community. This is where my hope rests..for the moment.
Throughout the weekend, CNN and Headline News will be playing this footage of the Rev. Sally Bingham’s environmental activism. Her Interfaith Power and Light campaign is mobilizing a national religious response to global warming while promoting renewable energy, resource efficiency and conservation.
The polluting industry is losing is exploitative grip on the American religious landscape. Now it’s almost impossible to fail to find an article each week on the greening of God. In fact, the dog bites man story is becoming “evangelicals care for creation.”
For example, from the Associated Press:
The tall, tan pastor stood at the pulpit of his Baptist church on a recent Sunday morning, cleared his throat, and nervously proclaimed the following:
“We can embrace God and Scripture and science together. And it’s enough to say when they agree – and sometimes they do – we should embrace it. And they agree that our Earth cannot last forever. And that we are charged with the responsibility of taking care of it.”
With that, there was another rustle in the crowd. And Peachtree Baptist Church had opened its two-month Sunday sermon series on the environment.
But this growing club of the Godly greens reveals more than a local church shift.
This is evident in “true conservative” Bob Novak’s recent column attacking GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee.
Huckabee clearly departs from the mainstream of the conservative movement in his confusion of “growth” with “greed.” Such ad hominem attacks are part of his intuitive response to criticism from the Club for Growth. . . . On “Fox News Sunday” on Nov. 18, he called the “tactics” of the Club for Growth “some of the most despicable in politics today. It’s why I love to call them the Club for Greed. . .”
Never one to shed light basic human morality, Novak continues to split “economic conservative” from scripture:
But Huckabee simply does not fit within normal boundaries of economic conservatism, such as when he criticized President Bush’s veto of a Democratic expansion of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program. Calling global warming a “moral issue” mandating “a biblical duty” to prevent climate change, he has endorsed a cap-and-trade system that is anathema to the free market.
It’s becoming clear that a split is coming, with the godly moving away from the greedy “conservatives” and joining the growing club for a green future.
Barguna, Bangladesh – The death toll from Thursday’s cyclone in Bangladesh is now more than 3,100, and officials say that number could reach 10,000 once rescuers get to outlying islands. Rescuers are struggling to reach thousands of survivors, and relief items have been slow to reach many.