Our children cannot hold the weight of their future alone. We must do right by them, by working to protect the climate and resources that they inherit from us. This is a moral imperative, second to none.
Everybody has an intrinsic human right to be able to breathe clean air and live within a stable climate. Because air does not respect state or national borders, everybody is affect
Numerous studies have clearly indicated the way in which populations already disadvantaged by socio-economic status or racial discrimination bear a disproportionate burden of toxic air pollutants including carbon and other greenhouse gasses. This is also true of children and the elderly among whom asthma and respiratory infections have been rising as the air grows more polluted.
As a Lutheran Pastor, I am deeply aware that Christianity, like many other religious traditions articulates the ethical mandate to love our neighbors as ourselves and care for the most vulnerable and marginalized among us. Still it is not only the most vulnerable and marginalized who have a stake in this matter. Everybody has an intrinsic human right to be able to breathe clean air and live within a stable climate. Because air does not respect state or national borders, everybody is affected when toxins are spewed into the air.
In traveling to Washington D.C., I represent countless people of faith who call upon President Obama and Congress to exercise not only their political power but their moral authority to regulate emissions and tax carbon so that the true cost of burning fossil fuels is accurately reflected in the prices of goods and services while the most economically vulnerable are protected from extreme price fluctuations. Such choices do not only make good sense. They are a moral imperative from which no leader can be released until all people have clean air and a stable climate in which to live out their life, express their liberty and pursue their happiness.