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World Christian leaders have come together to warn of the ‘catastrophic consequences’ of climate change, saying now is a ‘critical time’ for the future of the planet.
Pope Francis, Canterbury Archbishop Justin Welby and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, leader of the Eastern Orthodox Church, issued the joint statement ahead of the November 26 Cop climate summit.
In their first joint statement, the three clergy urged people to play their role in ‘choosing life’ for the planet and called on leaders to make decisions that enable a transition to ‘just and sustainable economies’.
They also warned about the urgency of environmental sustainability and the impact that climate change has on poverty, urging global cooperation on the issue.
The statement read: ‘We call on everyone, whatever their belief or worldview, to endeavor to hear the cry of the earth and people who are poor, examining their behavior and promising significant sacrifices for the good of the earth that God has given. U.S.
“This is the first time that the three of us have felt compelled to address together the urgency of environmental sustainability, its impact on persistent poverty and the importance of global cooperation,” he added.
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The leaders also called for everyone to take individual responsibility for fighting climate change and making personal changes to help the crisis.
The statement read: ‘This is a critical moment. The future of our children and the future of our common home depend on it.
“Each of us, individually, must take responsibility for the way we use our resources. This path requires an ever closer collaboration between all the churches in their commitment to care for creation.
“Together as communities, churches, cities and nations, we must change course and discover new ways of working together to break down traditional barriers between peoples, stop competing for resources and start collaborating.”
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew conducts the Divine Liturgy at the St. Sophia Cathedral, Kyiv, August 22.
COP26, which the Pope hopes to attend, will take place in Glasgow from October 31 to November 12.
The talks aim to stimulate more ambitious commitments by countries to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and keep the global average temperature rise well below 2 degrees Celsius this century, in line with a 2015 Paris agreement.
But many countries, especially the poorest that are falling behind in vaccinations against Covid-19, have recently expressed concern about their ability to participate due to the pandemic.
On Tuesday, the CAN global network of more than 1,500 climate NGOs called on Britain to postpone the summit.
Typically, delegates from more than 190 countries attend the annual conversations.
But an increase in Covid cases, uneven global vaccine deployment, and strict quarantine requirements for more than 60 ‘red list’ countries or territories waiting to attend UN talks mean that ‘a global climate conference Safe, inclusive and fair is impossible, ‘CAN said in a statement.
“Our concern is that the countries most affected by the climate crisis and the countries that suffer from a lack of support from rich nations in the supply of vaccines will be left out of the talks,” said Tasneem Essop, executive director of CAN.
Christian leaders comes after medical journals from around the world
COP26 host Great Britain said in June that it would offer vaccines to delegates in need and has since said vaccines under this program would start this week.
However, CAN said in a statement that Britain has been slow to deliver vaccines and that many countries are likely to miss out as a result.
The problem is compounded, he said, by the need for unvaccinated delegates to quarantine themselves in a hotel for 10 days if they arrive from what Britain has identified as red list countries.
British COP26 President Alok Sharma said Britain would pay the costs of the quarantine and it was vital that the talks progress as planned.
The statement by Christian leaders comes after medical journals from around the world warned on Monday that global warming is already affecting people’s health so much that emergency actions on climate change cannot be suspended as the world grapples. with the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Health is already being damaged by rising global temperatures and destruction of the natural world,” read an editorial published in more than 220 leading magazines.
The editorial, written by the editors-in-chief of more than a dozen journals, including Lancet, East African Medical Journal, Revista de Saude Publica do Brasil and International Nursing Review, said this had caused a host of health problems.
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew Quicks and Facts
- Statement came from Pope Francis, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, the leader of the Eastern Orthodox Church
- Warned of the ‘catastrophic consequences’ of climate change ahead of Cop26
- It is the first ever joint statement from the world’s three Christian leaders
- Cop26 will take place this year in Glasgow from October 31 to November 12