Catholic Leaders Call for Global Discernment and Cooperation to Address the Climate Crisis at COP26

October 31, 2021 By Public Affairs Office

WASHINGTON – The United Nations will convene their annual meeting on climate, COP26, on October 31. In advance of the meeting, Archbishop Paul S. Coakley of Oklahoma City, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, and Bishop David J. Malloy of Rockford, chairman of the USCCB’s Committee on International Justice and Peace, together with Mr. Sean Callahan, president and CEO of Catholic Relief Services (CRS), released the following statement:

“The climate crisis is complex and demands the discernment and cooperation of the entire human family. We appreciate the Biden Administration’s recent commitments in anticipation of COP26 to reduce carbon dioxide and methane emissions within our own borders and to increase climate finance contributions for adaptation and mitigation in low-income countries. These new developments reflect an integral ecology that promotes care for creation and strengthens the bonds of solidarity between nations, particularly between the rich and the poor.

“Yet, the challenge posed by climate change demands ongoing effort from all of us. COP 26 is an opportunity for all nations to protect the environment while at the same time providing reliable, affordable and carbon free energy through innovation and enterprise, ensuring a better future for the entire human family, especially for the working class, the poor and marginalized. In his message to the World Bank and International Monetary Fund this spring, Pope Francis spoke of the ‘ecological debt’ developed nations must pay, ‘not only by significantly limiting their consumption of non-renewable energy or by assisting poorer countries to enact policies and programmes of sustainable development, but also by covering the costs of the innovation required for that purpose (cf. Laudato Si’, 51-52).’

“We unite with the Holy Father in upholding the Church’s teaching that creation is a precious gift of God intended to be shared by all. To protect this gift, as the world races towards a sustainable future, we must not forget those who suffer the greatest from ecological degradation. Climate leadership requires finding common ground in the pursuit of the common good, for the entire planet is our one ‘common home.’”

Recent USCCB advocacy related to the environment can be found at the following links:

 

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