On June 28, 2015, the General Assembly of the Unitarian Universalist Association passed a resolution calling on Unitarian Universalists to take action for a livable climate. This “Action of Immediate Witness” was one of four social justice statements passed by the General Assembly this June.
SUPPORT A STRONG, COMPASSIONATE GLOBAL CLIMATE AGREEMENT IN 2015: ACT FOR A LIVABLE CLIMATE
2015 Action of Immediate Witness
WHEREAS, global climate change is fundamentally a moral and ethical crisis induced and exacerbated by human activity that can and must be modified to maintain a livable world for ourselves, our descendants, and other species;
WHEREAS, looming ecological catastrophes impacting food, water, and disease threaten the vulnerable and our descendants with mass suffering;
WHEREAS, Peter Morales (UUA President) and Bill Schulz (UUSC President and CEO) recently wrote that “The crisis of climate change is the gravest threat facing our world today”;
WHEREAS, we can act to limit the harmful consequences of climate change by effective risk management (adaptation and mitigation, including emission reductions, development of renewable energy, etc.), with sufficient motivation, persistence, optimism, and will;
WHEREAS, our Principles impel us to act on climate change: The web of life is threatened: climate catastrophes (in near and long term) disproportionately impact the poor, disadvantaged, elderly, women, and children; issues of equity, justice, democracy, speaking truth, and defending the right of conscience are associated; and our descendants are threatened, raising intergenerational equity issues;
WHEREAS, Unitarian Universalists overwhelmingly voted to adopt a Statement of Conscience on the Threat of Global Warming and Climate Change in 2006, calling Unitarian Universalists into action to mitigate climate change;
WHEREAS, there can be no long-term solution to many social justice issues with which Unitarian Universalists are concerned without a viable solution to the climate problem; and
WHEREAS, we are responsible as people of faith to mitigate, avert, and limit the potential catastrophes of climate change, standing with other faith traditions caring for our common home;
WHEREAS, Unitarian Universalists have made a commitment to climate justice and stand in solidarity with first nation peoples, who are disproportionally affected by climate disruption;
WHEREAS, an international climate agreement is critical for reducing risk of the myriad severe climate impacts and also increasing positive opportunities for all people; and
WHEREAS, an December 2015, many nations of the world will gather in Paris for their last opportunity to negotiate the most important climate agreement in history;
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the 2015 UU General Assembly calls on Unitarian Universalists to unify and provide ethical and moral leadership for climate action and to do so within our congregations and within our multi-faith communities;
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that Unitarian Universalists will support local actions such as the Lummi Nations’ opposition to the Gateway Pacific Coal Terminal on sacred lands;
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that Unitarian Universalists will participate in and support mobilizations nationally such as the Moral March for Climate Justice in September 2015 during the Papal visit to Washington DC, pressing our government to act urgently and responsibly; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the 2015 UU General Assembly endorses a Unitarian Universalist delegation to the UN Climate Agreement Talks in December 2015 to support a strong, compassionate, fair, ambitious, binding, and enforceable international climate agreement. Without a global climate agreement, the climate crisis will not be sufficiently addressed, and many social justice issues will continue to magnify.
View this resolution on the Unitarian Universalist Association’s website, or view the many other environmental justice statements the Unitarian Universalist Association has made over the past fifty years.