Climate Action is our Mandate

Climate Action is our Mandate

by The Eficor Team, India

Introduction

Things have changed. It has become much hotter. We no longer know when it will rain. The streams have dried up. The forests have been replaced by roads and instead of trees there are concrete jungles. These are just some of the things that we hear when we conduct workshops on Creation Care and ask people to think about the changes in their local environment. Not once have I heard anyone say that things have changed for the better. The changes are real and the changes are devastating. However, it is also true that for many of us things like Climate Change are (for now) just an inconvenience’. If it gets too hot, we will just place more air-conditioners in our homes and offices and run them as long as we need to. If it gets too cold, we will find ways of heating our homes better. And many will travel in air-conditioned cars protecting us from the extreme weather and pollution. And while some can 'shield' ourselves from the impact, Climate Change is making life harder for many around the world. Extreme weather events like floods – occurring ever more frequently - have led to huge losses for farmers. Unpredictable monsoons that either come too early or too late have consistently affected production. An inconvenience for some of us is a death sentence for many – especially the poor. Whatever the debates around Climate Change, however much our apathy to face it - should we not address this issue simply because the Bible talks about stewardship of creation and simply because the impact of Climate Change is affecting the poor the most? How about we – as stewards of God’s creation - inform, engage and challenge one another to stir to action and realise that Climate Change does matter – to us and to God. Read the article
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CLIMATE CHANGE THEOLOGY

CLIMATE CHANGE THEOLOGY

By James S. Pender
2008

Barely a day goes by without us reading an article in a newspaper about climate change; be it about international negotiations, carbon trading, controversy over its future effects or how it impacts on peoples' lives. Firstly it is important to note that "climate" simply refers to dominant weather patterns and secondly "climate change" has been happening for millennia.

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A Triage Model of Emergency Aid for a Warming World

A Triage Model of Emergency Aid for a Warming World

By Russell McKane
28 March 2011

With the advent of multiple natural and human disasters bought on by climate change, agencies delivering disaster relief and aid need to develop a different model of operating. Multiple disasters and emergencies occurring simultaneously over the Majority world and Minority world will dry up resources (Food, equipment and finances) leaving NGOs the difficult task of allocation of limited aid. In an effort to prepare ahead for a more effective response it is proposed that a triage system be developed. This would be based on similar principles as applied in a multiple accident scene.

A triage system would mean not treating some patents (not responding to a region or country in crisis), providing sustenance support for others, and focusing on those able to be helped. This would require developing a set of rules that all providers agree to before the hard choices need to be made. It would also mean the need for rules of disengagement should the situation on the ground be shown to break the engagement conditions.

As an important component of the Model each individual country needs to develop the ability to manage crisis internally and NGO's need to develop individual country branches able to operate independently. This should include the development of stores and supplies ahead of any event.

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Caring for creation

The earth is so beautiful! For a time in my life, I used BBC’s Planet Earth as part of my quiet time with God – I was so blown away by the magnificence of creation, from the underground crystal caves that are indescribably beautiful in Mexico, to the massive expanse of red sand dunes of Namibia.

Earlier on in my Christian faith journey I left my natural inclination towards caring for creation and conservation of nature at the proverbial door, as it felt like evangelism and a focus on human suffering was of greater importance. Over the years I have learned more about a biblical understanding of integral mission and see that you don’t have to make a choice between the two. It is not a toss-up between ‘care about people’ and ‘care about the earth’. I have learned that they impact on one another in significant ways and caring for one is good for the other, and vice versa.

We have been given the mandate to care for this planet we call home. Throughout the Bible we are reminded that this is God’s creation and it is good! Psalms 24:1 tells us that “The earth is God’s and everything in it, the world and all who live in it.” Some see the stewardship call from God in Genesis as an excuse to abuse the earth, but caring for this planet we have been given to live on and seeing the worth of all of creation, is good for us all and brings God glory. Revelation 11:18 reminds us that those who destroy the earth, will not go unpunished. And there is a lot more Biblical evidence that points to the truth that the planet is ours to steward well, not to abuse and plunder.

It is also a fact that it is the most vulnerable who feel the greatest impact of climate change. Martin Kapenda, from Micah Zambia, said in this clip recently, “Let us unite together to fight the forces of climate change and put up solutions that will work well for the people living in poverty, especially those mostly affected by climate change. It affects the poor most, and the poor are the ones who pollute the least, and that is the injustice of climate change. So, let us work together to change this scenario.”

Caring for creation is part of our mandate as Jesus followers on earth. Don’t be discouraged by those who have not understood this. Keep praying and acting and setting an example. Make ongoing changes in your life that will impact on the size of your environmental footprint. Challenge your political leaders to take this seriously. Pray for the Church to be an example by stewarding creation in ways that bring life and well-being to all living creatures. Pray for wisdom to raise children who see this as a part of our Christian discipleship. And pray that we leave a good legacy and life-giving earth for those children to steward in the future.

Let us pray … renew our hearts, God, and renew our world.

Linda Martindale
Micah Global

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