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Key Takeaways From the Faith & Climate Webinars

June 26, 2019

The first two webinars in PoWR’s Faith and Climate Webinar Series, organized in partnership with the Security and Sustainability Forum (SSF), were resounding successes.
The June 4 webinar about the Youth Climate Suit Juliana et al v United States and the June 18 webinar on The Ten Green Commandments of Laudato si’ were among the highest rated in SSF’s ten-year, 200+ webinar history. 650 people from 25 countries registered for the Juliana webinar, with 284 in attendance; 1,153 people from 67 countries and 46 U. S. states registered for theTen Green Commandments webinar, with 495 in attendance.
We hope you had the opportunity to participate during the first two webinars in the series. In case you missed it, our team has compiled some critical takeaways from each of the webinars.
Here are our top 3 takeaways from Juliana vs the United States (The Youth Climate Suit)
1. The plaintiffs invoked a legal concept called the “Public Trust Doctrine”, arguing that the government has a responsibility to hold natural resources, including climate, in trust for future generations.
2. Although the case is winding its way through the federal courts, District Court Judge Ann Aiken inspired hope when she wrote, “exercising my ‘reasoned judgment,’ I have no doubt that the right to a climate system capable of sustaining human life is fundamental to a free and ordered society.”
3. It’s not too late for society to do something about climate change. According to Brenda Ekwurzel, Director of Climate Science at Union of Concerned Scientists,  “It’s better to fight for every molecule at this point because it matters. Every carbon dioxide molecule that we stop from going into the atmosphere, every methane molecule, is really, really important.”
Want to learn more? Watch the webinar recording linked below.

Here are our top 3 takeaways from The Ten Green Commandments of Laudato si’
1. Laudato si’, Pope Francis’s groundbreaking 2015 encyclical, is a call to action to care for our common home. Though best known for its entreatment of humanity to deal with climate change, the encyclical also calls on us to hear ‘the cry of the poor’ and to understand the social and environmental intersection of the climate crisis.
2. Within Judaism, there are parallel concepts, including Ba’al Tashchit (do not destroy trees or the environment), T’shuvah (repenting and taking responsibility), and Tikkun Olam (our duty to repair the world).
3. The Quran also beseeches us not to waste, and Prophet Muhammad said “the whole earth has been made a masjid (mosque) for us” and we must care for one another.
Watch the webinar recording, available linked below!

Please stay tuned for future webinars in the series, which will continue to bring together diverse voices of religious and spiritual leaders, scientists, lawyers, and other experts to explore the critically significant intersection between the climate crisis and faith communities throughout the world.
Visit the Climate Action WebForum and the Climate Commitments Web Hub for more information.