Skip to content

Father Edu Calls on Pope Francis to take Strong Action on Climate Change

2015_Jan21_blog

January 21, 2015

With the aftermath of super typhoon Haiyan still part of their daily lives, Filipino Catholic Church groups and civil society organizations, implored Pope Francis to take strong action on climate change during his recent visit.

In a joint statement from the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines-National Secretariat for Social Action (CBCP-NASSA), and the Philippine Movement for Climate Justice (PMCJ), 2012 Goldman Prize winner Father Edwin Gariguez called on the Pope to support the poor and vulnerable communities most affected by climate crises. “Clearly climate change is a moral issue and we in the Church cannot remain passive bystanders,” he said.

The statement also encouraged the Pope “to be one with them in demanding governments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through a deliberate large-scale intervention; fairly and equitable share the global emissions budget; ensure the welfare and rights of people amid the climate crisis; and put an end to false solutions, the expansion of carbon markets and corporate domination in climate negotiations, and translating these commitments into concrete policies.”

“Climate change is an issue that is clearly related to our Christian responsibility to care for the earth and to care for the poor and vulnerable in our midst,” said Father Gariguez. “Those principles are at stake of being violated when we do not avert or address the causes of climate change.”

Father Edwin Gariguez was awarded the Goldman Prize in 2012 for leading a grassroots movement against a large-scale nickel mine to protect Mindoro Island’s (a major island in the northwestern Philippines) biodiversity and indigenous people.

The Pope recognized the importance of grassroots activists like Father Edu, who are working at the local level to stem the impacts of climate change. “Thanks be to God that today there are voices, so many people who are speaking out about it,” he said.

The Pope is expected to release an encyclical on ecology by June or July of this year, in time for it to be “read and absorbed” before the final round of climate negotiations take place in Paris in November.

Related Posts

Prize Winners Today: Cambodian Elephant Conservation with Sereivathana Tuy


January 31, 2023 – By Ellen Lomonico

Uncle Elephant They call him “Uncle Elephant.” Determined, intelligent, and kind, Sereivathana Tuy (known as “Vathana”) is everything you’d want in an uncle. He’s an ex-park ranger, National Geographic Explorer, and, most importantly, a committed conservationist who has devoted his life to protecting elephants in Cambodia. We chatted with Vathana about winning the Goldman Prize…

Read more

The 2023 Goldman Environmental Prize is Monday, April 24


January 10, 2023

The Goldman Environmental Prize is excited to share that the 2023 Prize winners will be announced on Monday, April 24. The Prize winners will be celebrated at live ceremonies to coincide with Earth Day: at the War Memorial Opera House in San Francisco on Monday, April 24, and at the Eisenhower Theater at the John…

Read more

Goldman Prize Executive Director Michael Sutton on Why We Should Support Grassroots Voices


January 3, 2023 – By Michael Sutton

Happy New Year! A new year brings fresh inspiration, motivation, and possibilities. It also provides an opportunity for reflection—on the previous year, its highs and lows, and what lessons it conveys to us for the future. This past year, I had the opportunity to immerse myself in nature on several occasions. Memorably, my son and…

Read more