NCC speaks out with diverse group confronting global warming
New York City, February 20, 2007 -- The National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA (NCC) today joined with dozens of international business, civic, educational and religious organizations speaking out to stop global warming.
"For the faith community this is a moral issue," said the Rev. Bob Edgar, NCC's general secretary. "It is in the Christian Bible, the Torah, and the Quran that we are to do unto others as we would want them to do unto us. We believe the impact of global warming will have a disproportionate effect on the world's poor," said Edgar, who was also representing the World Council of Churches as well as the NCC. "We have an obligation to help our brothers and sisters around the world," he said.
The Global Roundtable on Climate Change (GROCC), a coalition of more than 150 stakeholders, released a statement on global warming at a news conference on the Columbia University campus. The statement outlines the steps that must be taken in order to stop the global climate crisis. [Complete GROCC statement at http://www.earthinstitute.columbia.edu/grocc/] The NCC worked closely with members of GROCC to highlight the need to ensure the reduction of greenhouse gas, particularly carbon dioxide emissions from every sector.
"Global warming is an urgent problem that is not only affecting God's planet but also God's people," Edgar told the packed news conference. "We can prevent catastrophic climate change by turning to renewable and sustainable energy options that will allow not only prevent further climate change but ensure that people around the world have access to clean safe energy."
The NCC and Edgar have been working with GROCC for three years to identify and explore the areas of consensus that exist within the scientific, economic, social and religious communities that would help shape public policy addressing the issue of global warming.
"This process has been invaluable," acknowledged Edgar. "It has provided an opportunity for people with different interests to come together and identify the changes we must make. This is a needed step in the long road to addressing global warming." Also attending the news conference were representatives of major international energy companies, a large manufacturer of heavy trucks and buses, insurance and risk management companies, non-governmental organizations and others.
The NCC has been working to ensure that the voice and needs of those communities most threatened by the impacts of global warming are addressed. Through the NCC's climate and energy program, active is almost a dozen states around the country, clergy and lay leaders are educated about the moral and religious aspects of global warming.
"We have a program to get every church, synagogue, mosque and temple to do something very simple--change their lightbulbs to more energy efficient ones," Edgar told the news conference. "I for one don't think technology itself is going to save us from global warming but wise thinking about how to use that technology will save us," he said
The NCC is continuing to work on global warming through its climate and energy campaign as well as through coalitions like GROCC.
The NCC is the ecumenical voice of America's Orthodox, Protestant, Anglican, historic African American and traditional peace churches. These 35 communions have 45 million faithful members in 100,000 congregations in all 50 states.
NCC News contact: Dan Webster, 212.870.2252, NCCnews@ncccusa.org. NCC Eco-Justice program contact: Cassandra Carmichael, 202.481.6928, firstname.lastname@example.org. GROCC media contact: Clare Oh, 212.854.5479, email@example.com. More NCC Eco-Justice news at www.nccecojustice.org. Latest NCC News at www.councilofchurches.org.