Current commitments to mitigate the effects of climate change and alter human behaviour fall short of those needed to resolve the crisis, Pope Francis said this week. Source: CNS.
“We must admit that this awareness is still rather weak, unable to respond adequately to that strong sense of urgency for rapid action called for by the scientific data at our disposal,” the Pope said in a message to the UN Climate Change Conference, COP25.
The conference began in Madrid on Monday and continues until December 13. The Vatican released a copy of the Pope’s message on Wednesday.
The conference aimed to take crucial steps in the UN climate change process and to identify effective strategies for implementing the Paris Agreement, a framework of action against climate change adopted by the UN in 2015.
However, studies by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change “demonstrate how far words are from concrete actions,” the Pope said.
According to the intergovernmental panel, global temperatures and emissions continue to rise and humanity is not on course to fulfil the goals of the Paris Agreement by 2020.
“We must seriously ask ourselves if there is the political will to allocate with honesty, responsibility and courage, more human, financial and technological resources to mitigate the negative effects of climate change,” Pope Francis said.
He also affirmed that numerous studies show how curbing global warming is still possible.
This closing window of opportunity “calls us to reflect conscientiously on the significance of our consumption and production models and on the processes of education and awareness to make them consistent with human dignity”, he said.
“We are facing a ‘challenge of civilisation’ in favour of the common good and of a change of perspective that places this same dignity at the centre of our action,” the Pope said.
He called on international leaders and ordinary citizens to act rather than allow the burden to fall on the next generations.
“May we offer the next generation concrete reasons to hope and work for a good and dignified future,” he said.
Pope to COP 25: Do not close the window of opportunity (Vatican News)