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‘Human-induced climate change, a scientific reality,’ world leaders declare in The Vatican

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United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon in a hand shake with Pope Francis during the climate summit in the Vatican, recently

United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon in a hand shake with Pope Francis during the climate summit in the Vatican, recently

WORLD leaders meeting at the Vatican for a conference on climate change have issued a final statement, declaring that “human-induced climate change is a scientific reality” and “its decisive mitigation is a moral and religious imperative for humanity.”
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he statement says that humans have the technological and financial means, and the know-how, to combat human-induced climate change, while at the same time eliminating global poverty.

The Workshop, entitled “Protect the Earth, Dignify Humanity: The Moral Dimensions of Climate Change and Sustainable Humanity” was organized by the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, SDSN and Religions for Peace.

Making their declaration, the religious Leaders, Political Leaders, Business Leaders, Scientists and Development Practitioners said that the poor and excluded face dire threats from climate disruptions, including the increased frequency of droughts, extreme storms, heat waves, and rising sea levels.

According to them, “ the world has within its technological grasp, financial means, and know-how the means to mitigate climate change while also ending extreme poverty, through the application of sustainable development solutions including the adoption of low-carbon energy systems supported by information and communications technologies.

“The financing of sustainable development, including climate mitigation, should be bolstered through new incentives for the transition towards low-carbon energy, and through the relentless pursuit of peace, which also will enable the shift of public financing from military spending to urgent investments for sustainable development.”

They declared, “We join together from many faiths and walks of life, reflecting humanity’s shared yearning for peace, happiness, prosperity, justice, and environmental sustainability. We have considered the overwhelming scientific evidence regarding human-induced climate change, the loss of biodiversity, and the vulnerabilities of the poor to economic, social, and environmental shocks.”

In the face of the emergencies of human-induced climate change, social exclusion, and extreme poverty, we join together to declare that: “All sectors and stakeholders must do their part, a pledge that we fully commit to in our individual capacities.”

In this core moral space, the world’s religions play a very vital role. These traditions all affirm the inherent dignity of every individual linked to the common good of all humanity. They affirm the beauty, wonder, and inherent goodness of the natural world, and appreciate that it is a precious gift entrusted to our common care, making it our moral duty to respect rather than ravage the garden that is our home;

They said: “Political leaders of all UN member states have a special responsibility to agree at COP21 to a bold climate agreement that confines global warming to a limit safe for humanity, while protecting the poor and the vulnerable from ongoing climate change that gravely endangers their lives. The high-income countries should help to finance the costs of climate-change mitigation in low-income countries as the high-income countries have promised to do.


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