Climate Panel Report “Dire Warning” with Narrow Window for Action
Climate change is causing widespread and dangerous threats to nature and billions of people around the planet, but especially those least able to cope, according to a report released this week by the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which warns that humankind has a narrowing window for action.
“This report is a dire warning about the consequences of inaction,” Hoesung Lee, Chair of the IPCC , said in a statement. “It shows that climate change is a grave and mounting threat to our wellbeing and a healthy planet. Our actions today will shape how people adapt and nature responds to increasing climate risks.”
“The world faces unavoidable multiple climate hazards over the next two decades with global warming of 1.5°C (2.7°F),” according to the IPCC statement. “Even temporarily exceeding this warming level will result in additional severe impacts, some of which will be irreversible. Risks for society will increase, including to infrastructure and low-lying coastal settlements.”
As Christians, we are called to care for our common home. Our ELCA social statement, Caring for Creation: Vision, Hope, and Justice, describes this call:
“Humanity is intimately related to the rest of creation. We, like other creatures, are formed from the earth (Genesis 2:7, 9, 19). Scripture speaks of humanity’s kinship with other creatures (Psalm 104, Job 38-39). God cares faithfully for us, and together we join in singing the “hymn of all creation” (Lutheran Book of Worship, page 61; Psalm 148). We look forward to a redemption that includes all creation (Ephesians 1:10). Humans, in service to God, have special roles on behalf of the whole of creation. Made in the image of God, we are called to care for the earth as God cares for the earth. God’s command to have dominion and subdue the earth is not a license to dominate and exploit. Human dominion (Genesis 1:28; Psalm 8), a special 2 Caring for Creation: responsibility, should reflect God’s way of ruling as a shepherd king who takes the form of a servant (Philippians 2:7), wearing a crown of thorns.”
Opportunities for action:
- Sign up to join LAMPa creation care advocates by sending a note here.
- Send a note to your state lawmakers, urging them to support bipartisan legislation that would make it easier for churches and and communities to go solar.
- Interested in exploring how your congregation can become more sustainable and reach climate goals? Send us a note and join a network of Pennsylvania Lutheran congregations and institutions in being church together on the journey to a livable future. Get an analysis of your current footprint and guidance, resources and inspiration for the journey.
- Urge Congress to act on disaster response and prevention.
- Consider becoming an ELCA Creation Care Ambassador.
March 22 — Join LAMPa for a webinar on choosing your electricity supplier with climate in mind.
March 22 — Join Lutherans Restoring Creation for their monthly call and get practical ideas for how your spending and investing can drive change.
June 2 — Save the date and join us for a day of advocacy for renewable energy in Pennsylvania.
Sept. 11 — God’s work. Our hands. Sunday — Start planning now for service and advocacy projects that engage all ages in being good stewards of creation. Need help? Contact us!
Resources for learning, praying and acting:
ELCA Advocacy Resources for Caring for Creation Today
Caring for Creation: Vision, Hope, and Justice — ELCA Social Statement
More at Lutherans Restoring Creation.