Elders Statement on Cop 26 and Climate Justice: A Call to Action

“And God saw that it was good” (Genesis 1:10b)

 

“We affirm God’s charge to all of humanity to care for the land, sea, and air. Therefore, we will actively resist systems and structures which are destroying God’s creation” (From the UFMCC Statement of Faith)

UFMCC recognises that God created the earth and everything in it and gave people the responsibility to take care of Creation. We acknowledge that we have fallen short of these high standards and that our world is out of kilter.

We call upon the COP26 (Conference of the Parties 26) UN Climate Change Conference UK, to be held in Glasgow, Scotland, in October 2021, to respond to the effects of global climate change. We call upon global leaders to endorse the targets and pledges that will be set at COP26 and ensure that we are able to begin to tackle the climate crisis.

The goals of COP26 are ambitious but necessary. They are:

  • To secure global net zero carbon emissions by the middle of the century and to maintain global temperature rises to 1.5%C. This includes phasing out the use of coal, curtailing deforestation, speeding up the use of electric vehicles and encouraging investment in renewable energy.
  • To adapt our behaviour to protect vulnerable communities and to protect natural habitats. We must act to protect and restore damaged ecosystems, build resilient infrastructure to avoid the loss of homes, livelihoods, and lives.
  • To mobilise finance – COP26 acknowledges that to achieve their first two goals that developed countries must make good on their promises to mobilise at least US$100bn by 2020.
  • To work together to challenge the climate crisis by implementing the details of the Paris Agreement is a legally binding international treaty on climate change. It was adopted by 196 Parties at COP 21 in Paris in 2015. Accelerate collaboration by governments, business, and civil society.

UFMCC calls upon governments to sign up to the actions recommended by COP26. We call upon the countries that are the biggest emitters of carbon to attend and admit their role in the climate crisis.

UFMCC recognises that the most marginalised communities experience the consequences of climate change most acutely. We call for action to bring about a fairer society where all communities have equal access to wealth, resources and justice.

Please pray for your global leaders that COP26 will be a peaceful and successful conference. Pray for those climate activists who will be advocating for change – that they will experience a safe conference.

Creator God, we thank you for your creation and we acknowledge our collective responsibility for caring for it. We thank you for the goodness of creation, made by your energising Spirit. We honour the beauty of creation in all its many forms.

We know that we have fallen short of ensuring your world is not harmed. We ask for your forgiveness. We dedicate ourselves to taking action to reverse the effects of climate change where we can, whether large or small responses. We ask for your courage to enable us to unite behind what we know to be true.

We pray for our global leaders that they would come to COP26 with a spirit of cooperation. That those who are resistant to accepting the climate crisis will have their minds transformed. We ask that the most polluting countries would accept their global responsibilities. We pray that rich countries will also bear the weight of their global responsibilities for responding to climate change.

We pray for those whose lives are most at risk due to climate change will be protected. We pray for your climate justice.

We ask all these things in the name of the One who created all things, in the name of the One whose love encompasses all things and the Spirit who gives us life. Amen.