Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Iowa Bishop Calls for Climate Dialogue

The Rt. Rev. Alan Scarfe, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Iowa, is calling for a year-long dialogue about energy and climate change in Iowa in today's DesMoines Register (see excerpt of editorial below):
As people of faith we are called to care for God's sacred creation and everything therein, which the Lord has described as "good." We are charged with caring for the poor and vulnerable around the world through alleviation of global poverty. We are faced with a formidable challenge on both fronts - the effects of global warming.As the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Rowan Williams, noted in a recent statement, "The biggest challenge that faces us in terms of global policy at the moment is how we are to find ways of reducing and controlling climate change without eating into the economic aspirations, the proper aspirations of our poorest societies towards prosperity, respect and dignity."
In my own church we have heard from Anglican faithful in Swaziland about how climate-related drought has made it all but impossible to grow food. Our fellow churchgoers in Bangladesh have warned us that rising waters threaten to engulf the homes, places of worship and communities of millions. We must act to protect our brothers and sisters and reduce pollution here at home.After the disappointing response of the Bush administration to the global climate-change conference in Bali, it is increasingly apparent that it will fall to state-level leaders, such as Iowa Gov. Chet Culver, to help prod the United States to address the urgent challenges and opportunities created by global warming.
The good news for Iowans is that our governor made renewable energy a major part of his platform upon entering office. He has shown courage in helping to frame a multistate accord to reduce global-warming emissions. The next logical step for him in showing his commitment to a cleaner future for Iowa and the rest of the world is the convening of a statewide dialogue on energy and the related choices that we must all make.

Interfaith Power and Light is a religious response to global warming with chapters in 25 states and Greater Washington, D.C. Find a link to your local chapter at discounts on energy saving products at

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