A088 Commit to the Pressing Work of Addressing Global Climate Change and Environmental Justice
Resolved, That the 80th General Convention recognize as the Episcopal Church's position that global climate change is not only a scientific concern or environmental issue, but what the United Nations calls "the defining issue of our time... at a defining moment" (UN Secretary General, September 10, 2018), an all-encompassing social crisis and moral emergency that impacts and interconnects every aspect of pastoral concern including health, poverty, employment, racism, social justice, and family life and that can only be addressed by a Great Work involving every sector of society, including the Church; and affirm the commitment of the 79th General Convention to the House of Bishops’ 2011 Pastoral Teaching on the Environment as an official position of the church; and be it further
Resolved, That the Church recommit to the work done by previous General Conventions of The Episcopal Church on the pressing moral dimensions of global climate change and environmental justice, including resolutions 2000-D005, 2012-B023, 2015-C013, 2015-C045, 2018-A011, 2018-A018, 2018-A020, 2018-B027, 2018-C020, 2018-C021, and 2018-C064; and that General Convention reaffirm that the Episcopal Church shall support and advocate for policies, programs, pastoral responses, and theologies that work to ensure no community - especially financially impoverished communities, frontline residents, migrants, and BIPOC communities (Black, indigenous, and people of color) - shall bear a disproportionate impact of the environmental, health, and economic threats of climate change; and be it further
Resolved, That General Convention affirm the decision of the United States federal government to rejoin the Paris Climate Accord, while recognizing that the goals set forth in the Paris Accord are only a first step, insufficient in and of themselves to fully contain rising global temperatures and their impacts; and that General Convention encourage the Presiding Bishop's staff to continue, through our ongoing role as observers at the United Nations, to participate in all meetings of the Conference of Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change during the next triennium via delegations selected from an applicant pool and made up primarily of Episcopalians from financially impoverished communities, frontline locations, and BIPOC communities; and be it further
Resolved, That the General Convention request the Joint Standing Committee on Program, Budget and Finance to consider a budget allocation of $30,000 per triennium to support costs associated with travel to the COP conferences by delegation members who are not members of the Presiding Bishop's staff; and be it further
Resolved, That The Episcopal Church direct the Office of Government Relations and the Episcopal Public Policy Network to advocate for legislation and other public policies that directly address the impact of climate change among marginalized, indigenous, and frontline communities and that tangibly and financially assist those communities with the costs of both climate change and mitigation, and policies that prohibit the authorization and construction of new fossil fuel infrastructure including but not limited to coal, oil, or gas leases on public lands, all forms of mountaintop removal mining, and tar sands pipelines such as Keystone XL, Enbridge Line #3, and the Dakota Access Pipeline; and be it further
Resolved, That General Convention encourage all Church communities, especially parishes, dioceses, camps, conference centers, schools, and chaplaincies, to learn more about the pressing moral implications of climate change in their regions and existing local organizing efforts, then advocate for policies and solutions to address those local needs utilizing and adapting advocacy resources from General Convention and the Presiding Bishop's staff including the Episcopal Public Policy Network, asset map, carbon tracker, liturgical resources, and advocating at the local and state level, and incorporating local nature, environmental justice, and advocacy for creation care into all aspects of community life and Christian education.