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Melting Ice, Mending Creation

A Catholic Approach to Climate Change
by

Daniel Misleh

on 4 February 2016

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Transcript of Melting Ice, Mending Creation

Part 3: A Catholic Response to Climate Change
Part 2: Visual Evidence of Climate Change
PRAY and reflect on the duty to care for God’s Creation and protect the poor and vulnerable.

LEARN about and educate others on the causes and moral dimensions of climate change.

ASSESS how we-as individuals and in our families, parishes and other affiliations-contribute to climate change by our own energy use, consumption, waste, etc.

ACT to change our choices and behaviors to reduce the ways we contribute to climate change.

ADVOCATE for Catholic principles and priorities in climate change discussions and decisions, especially as they impact those who are poor and vulnerable.

Go to http://CatholicClimateCovenant.org

http://www.Facebook.com/CatholicClimateCovenant Twitter @CatholicClimate
Part 3: A Catholic Response to Climate Change
1. Prudence invites us to act based on thoughtful reason;

2. All of creation is endowed by God with intrinsic goodness;

3. Human life and human dignity are compromised by the adverse effects of climate change;

4. Poor and vulnerable people are disproportionately impacted by climate change and to whom we must show a preferential option for their needs;

5. Justice demands a wide-eyed recognition that those contributing most to the problem and those facing its worst impacts are not the same group;

6. The common good recognizes that creation is a gift intended for all;

7. Solidarity encourages us to recognize the kinship shared by all of creation: human and non-human;

8. Hospitality calls us to welcome the stranger with love and compassion.

Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching

Overview
Authentic Catholic teaching on climate change

Pontifical Academy of Science’s (PAS) Working Group Statement
"Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene"

Visual evidence of climate change

TED Talk with James Balog, director of the Extreme Ice Survey project

How Catholics can faithfully respond to the climate crisis

Part 3: A Catholic Response to Climate Change
"We call on all people and nations to recognize the serious and potentially irreversible impacts of global warming caused by the anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases and other pollutants, and by changes in forests, wetlands, grasslands, and other land uses. We appeal to all nations to develop and implement, without delay, effective and fair policies to reduce the causes and impacts of climate change on communities and ecosystems, including mountain glaciers and their watersheds, aware that we all live in the same home.

"By acting now, in the spirit of common but differentiated responsibility, we accept our duty to one another and to the stewardship of a planet blessed with the gift of life. We are committed to ensuring that all inhabitants of this planet receive their daily bread, fresh air to breathe and clean water to drink as we are aware that, if we want justice and peace, we must protect the habitat that sustains us. The believers among us ask God to grant us this wish."

Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene, p. 1

"Warming of the Earth is unequivocal. Most of the observed increase in globally averaged temperature since the mid-20th century is ‘very likely’—defined as more than 90% likely—to be the result of the observed increase in anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentrations."

The Pontifical Academy of Sciences
Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene, p. 7
"Convened an expert group of scientists [. . .] to discuss the fate of mountain glaciers in the Anthropocene and consider the responses required to stabilize the climate change affecting them."
The Pontifical Academy of Sciences
Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene, p. 7

Anthropocene: "[T]he new ‘man-made’ geologic epoch we are living in."

The Pontifical Academy of Sciences
Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene, p. 3
"In facing climate change, what we already know requires a response; it cannot be easily dismissed. Significant levels of scientific consensus—even in a situation with less than full certainty, where the consequences of not acting are serious—justifies, indeed can obligate, our taking action intended to avert potential dangers. In other words, if enough evidence indicates that the present course of action could jeopardize humankind's well-being, prudence dictates taking mitigating or preventative action."

Global Climate Change:
A Plea for Dialogue, Prudence, and the Common Good
2001
"Mountain glaciers serve another critical function: they preserve detailed information on past climate and the ability of glaciers to respond to different climate variables. This makes glaciers powerful tools for understanding past and present climate dynamics."
The Pontifical Academy of Sciences
Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene, p. 9-10
"Glaciers are shrinking in area worldwide [. . .and are] some of the clearest evidence we have for a change in the climate system."

“Long-term measurement series indicate that the rate of mass loss has more than doubled since the turn of the century. Melting mountain glaciers and snows have contributed significantly to the sea level rise observed in the last century.”

The Pontifical Academy of Sciences
Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene, p. 3
"This group’s consensus statement is a warning to humanity and a call for fast action—to mitigate global and regional warming, to protect mountain glaciers and other vulnerable ecosystems, to assess national and local climate risks, and to prepare to adapt to those climate impacts that cannot be mitigated."

The Pontifical Academy of Sciences
Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene, p. 7
"Ninety-seven percent of climate scientists agree that climate-warming trends over the past century are very likely due to human activities, and most of the leading scientific organizations worldwide have issued public statements endorsing this position."

National Aeronautics and Space Administration
http://climate.nasa.gov/scientific-consensus

Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching
http://extremeicesurvey.org/

Part 2: Visual Evidence of Climate Change

Sponsored by the Catholic Coalition on Climate Change
http://tinyurl.com/onmmdzm

http://tinyurl.com/k7wnczx

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Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching
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Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching
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Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching
Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching

http://catholicclimatecovenant.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/Pontifical-Academy-of-Sciences_Glacier_Report_050511_final.pdf

Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching
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Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching
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Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching
Greenland Ice Sheet Melting

http://tinyurl.com/kgof4qv
http://tinyurl.com/l2etwy5
Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching

“The Alpine glaciers have already lost more than 50% of their mass. Thousands of small glaciers in the Hindukush-Himalayan-Tibetan region continue to disintegrate, a threat to local communities and the many more people farther away who depend on mountain water resources.”

The Pontifical Academy of Sciences
Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene, p. 3
http://tinyurl.com/2whdt2b
Rhone Glacier, Switzerland, 1850-present


“In regions with dry and warm seasons, such as Central Asia, mountains and their glaciers and winter snows are like ‘water towers’ that store water for millions of people. Their behavior can be deceptive. Glacial mass loss can cause an initial temporary increase in runoff downstream from water that has been stored for a long time, as has been observed in several basins, but runoff inevitably decreases as the parent glaciers decrease further.”

The Pontifical Academy of Sciences
Fate of Mountain Glaciers in the Anthropocene, p. 9
Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching
Part 1: Climate Change and Catholic Teaching
http://tinyurl.com/kx7gn6w
Part 3: A Catholic Response to Climate Change
“To you and to all, I repeat: never yield to discouragement, do not lose trust, do not allow your hope to be extinguished. Situations can change, people can change. Be the first to seek to bring good, do not grow accustomed to evil, but defeat it. The Church is with you, bringing you the precious good of faith, bringing Jesus Christ, who 'came that they may have life and have it abundantly.'”

Pope Francis
Apostolic Visit to Rio De Janeiro, July 25, 2013
http://tinyurl.com/bl79usr
http://tinyurl.com/qf2dnst
http://tinyurl.com/kqmhh4e
Full transcript