For Immediate Release

Women of Faith: We Cannot Fight Climate Change as Individuals; A Communal Response is Necessary

Women of Faith: We Cannot Fight Climate Change as Individuals; A Communal Response is Necessary
Participants at the United Methodist Women Just Energy for All training, Dec. 2019 in Springfield, Illinois.

NEW YORK – United Methodist Women today joined other climate justice advocates in celebrating the fifth anniversary of the Paris Climate Agreement. Signed by 195 nations, the landmark agreement is a collective effort to slow climate change and accelerate actions needed for a more sustainable future. For people committed to caring for God’s creation, the Paris Agreement presents a tangible way to live out our faith.

“United Methodist Women recognizes that the climate crisis disproportionately impacts women, children and marginalized communities in the U.S. and around the world. The Paris Agreement is as necessary today as it was when it was forged five years ago. As women of faith, we urge the incoming Biden/Harris administration to create a cohesive response and take immediate action on day 1 with a plan that is at scale to combat the climate crisis,” said Elizabeth Chun Hye Lee, executive for economic and environmental justice and climate justice lead for United Methodist Women.

“Because the U.S. is only four percent of the world’s population but has emitted a quarter of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, the U.S. must make stronger commitments that meet and exceed the recommendations of the UN IPCC 1.5 degree Celsius report,” Lee said. “This means a complete phase out of fossil fuels, transition to 100% renewable energy, investment in infrastructure and electrification, and a transition where justice and equity are centered. The only way we can ensure women and children’s future in the U.S., and around the world, is if the federal government works with and listens to those most impacted, but often ignored: BIPOC women and youth from frontline and fenceline communities in our own country and women and youth from countries least responsible for but damaged most by the climate emergency.”

“Climate is one of the critical crises of our time. It will take all of us to develop new technology, change our investments, subsidies and our personal habits to care for the creation. The federal government has its role in that, as do we all. We must develop just and sustainable approaches as part of the community of nations and national leadership is best suited for that part of the work….” said Harriett Jane Olson, General Secretary and CEO of United Methodist Women.

In quoting the United Methodist Book of Discipline, Lee added “All creation is the Lord’s, and we are responsible for the ways in which we use and abuse it.’ Our administration is a vital part in producing and working towards a climate solution.”

Posted or updated: 12/8/2020 12:00:00 AM

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