Faith Principles for a Green New Deal

The introduction of the Green New Deal resolution in the 116th Congress presents a profound moral opportunity. Collectively, we have the chance to respond to the ecological and economic crises facing our shared home with bold and hopeful action. As people of faith and conscience, we are called to care for this world and its people. Climate change presents a grave danger to our neighbors at home and across the globe, to the ecosystems that sustain life, and to future generations. Hurricanes, droughts, wildfires, and floods are devastating the lives and livelihoods of millions, with the greatest impact felt by those who are least able to adapt. We know that inaction is harmful.
The Green New Deal lifts up important principles that we believe are central to responding faithfully to the opportunity to achieve the goals of the Green New Deal.
Truth and science: Solutions that are in line with scientific consensus on global warming and that respond with the needed urgency and thoroughness, including:
  • Emissions reductions targets consistent with the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5°C, achieving significant progress by 2030.
  • A comprehensive response that moves all sectors of our economy toward net-zero emissions by 2050.

Restoration and renewal: Economic and environmental revitalization that includes job programs, skills training, education, investment in a clean energy economy and just transition for both urban and rural areas, with a focus on:

  • The economically disenfranchised, people of color, indigenous communities, and women, who are disproportionately facing environmental degradation.
  • Reclamation and restoration of land and water adversely affected by fossil fuel production and processing.
  • The steadily-rising economic inequality and the opportunity for a clean energy economy to help counter these trends.

Compassion and fairness: Just treatment for all including workers and communities most dependent on fossil fuel energy, incorporating:

  • A posture of listening and learning from those who have been reliant on fossil fuels, and a recognition for their contributions to society.
  • Opportunities for clean, healthy, family-supporting jobs that heal our planet.
  • Transformation for our communities to be more prepared for extreme weather events, and more resilient to a changing climate in the long term.

Interdependence across boundaries: Sacred dialogue across political, geographic, racial and cultural boundaries, including:

  • Support for vulnerable communities around the world that are on the front lines of climate impacts.
  • Learning from clean energy successes around the world and sharing our country’s technology to help other countries adopt appropriate clean energy solutions.

As the warming in our world continues unabated, our local and global neighbors are suffering and dying from the effects of global warming. Urgent action is needed.

Many of our traditions call us to be prophetic voices, responding to injustice with a vision of how our world can be more loving, healthy, and equitable. We hope, pray, and advocate that any legislation written to achieve the goals of the Green New Deal will address the urgency of the climate crisis and seize the opportunity to create a new, more just and livable world for communities and our sacred Creation.

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