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St. Paul Resolution on Climate Change

Address Global Warming and Climate Change

 

WHEREAS           the ELCA adopted a social statement in 1993, “Caring for Creation: Vision, Hope, and Justice,” lifting up Christian

                                concern for the environment that is “shaped by the Word of God spoken in creation, the Love of God hanging on a

                                cross, the Breath of God daily renewing the face of the earth;” and

 

WHEREAS           James Hansen, chief environmental scientist for NASA, says that “We have at most ten years…to alter

                                fundamentally the trajectory of global greenhouse emissions,” that allowing such emissions to grow at the current

                                rate will result in “a far more desolate world” “for all foreseeable generations,” and that “our children,

                                grandchildren, and many more generations will bear the consequences of choices that we make in the next few

                                years;” and

 

WHEREAS           the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warns that unless urgent steps are taken to slow carbon

                                emissions the earth’s average temperature will rise between 2.5-10.4 degrees Fahrenheit during this century; and

 

WHEREAS           Britain’s highly respected Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research in its September 2006 report noted that “The

                                message is stark…The real challenge is making a radical shift within four years and driving down carbon intensity at

                                an unprecedented 9% a year for up to 20 years;” and

 

WHEREAS           British economist Sir Nicholas Stern in a report commissioned by the British government, reports that the cost of

                                curbing global warming amounts to about 1% of global gross domestic product while the cost of inaction would be

                                between 5-20% of global gross domestic product forever; and

 

WHEREAS           probable consequences of climate exchange include drastic changes in global weather patterns with unpredictable

                                impacts on both water supply and food production across the earth, and the intensification of social dislocation of

                                peoples and political strife between nations in an intensified struggle for control of scarce resources; and

 

WHEREAS           there are practical solutions to the problem of global warming; therefore be it

 

RESOLVED          that the Saint Paul Area Synod develop trainings in ministeriums and other formats in cooperation with

                                Congregations Caring for Creation for synod clergy, lay associates and other church staff, to help them prepare for

                                leading congregations, youth groups and other ministries in moral deliberation concerning global climate change its

                                impacts and solutions; and be it further

 

RESOLVED          that the Saint Paul Area Synod in cooperation with Congregations Caring for Creation develop trainings for

                                congregations to help their members address the issues, impacts and solutions concerning global climate change in

                                the personal, parish, and political contexts; and be it further

 

RESOLVED          that the Saint Paul Area Synod in cooperation with Congregations Caring for Creation form a local chapter of the

                                Lutheran Earthkeeping Network of the Synods, identifying contact people within each of our conferences to serve as

                                a resource for congregations in their conference seeking to get involved; and be it further

 

RESOLVED          that the staff of the Saint Paul Area Synod, through Congregations Caring for Creation, direct the Saint Paul Area

                                Synod’s congregations to the resources available so that they might effectively plan new facilities and major

                                building additions or renovations to include environmentally conscious and sustainable design; and maintain and

                                clean their facilities with renewable, recyclable and environmentally friendly products and materials; and be it

                                finally

 

RESOLVED          that the Saint Paul Area Synod engage in public policy advocacy to significantly reduce emissions that cause climate

                                change in the following five sectors: homes (such as use of high-efficiency furnaces and compact fluorescent light

                                bulbs), transportation (such as increasing automobile fuel efficiency standards); energy production (such as

                                increasing the production of electricity from renewable sources like wind); commercial (such as improving design

                                and construction for energy-efficient heating and lighting); and industrial (such as the use of waste heat for

                                cogeneration).

 

 

Submitted by these members of Pilgrim Lutheran Church, St. Paul, Minnesota:

 

Lisa Berg, Craig Eliason, Lynda Hirschboeck, Beth Landahl, Martha Laudert, Peter Laudert, Beth Nelson, Chuck Regal, Joan Regal, Kurt Schultz

Pastor Carol Tomer, 651-699-6886, ctomer@pilgrimstpaul.org

 

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