As part of a global effort to mobilize action and ambition on climate change, the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon organized a Climate Summit on 23 September 2014 in New York. In order to highlight the specific contributions that faith traditions bring to the international climate debate, the World Council of Churches and Religions for Peace organized an Interfaith Summit on Climate Change, to be held in New York 21-22 September 2014.
One of the objectives of this Interfaith Summit was to convey the faith communities’ concerns and proposals to the Secretary General’s Climate Summit as part of long term efforts to influence the climate negotiations and the contributions countries bring to the table.
Thirty religious leaders gathered in New York for the Interfaith Summit. The group reflected a balance of gender, religions, geography, strong moral leadership and knowledge, as well as engagement on issues related to climate change. The inclusion of indigenous people and youth was key. All the participants commited to being advocates for climate justice and the protection of the earth both at the global and the national level.
Building on earlier interfaith declarations, such as the Uppsala Interfaith Climate Manifesto from 2008, the Interfaith Declaration on Climate Change from 2009, and the Declaration on Climate Justice and Sustainable Peace in Africa from 2011, the Interfaith Summit also adopted a statement. The statement conveys a message on the threat of climate change and the importance of a fair and ambitious outcome of the international climate negotiations. The participants signed the statement at the summit; it is directed to heads of states, international negotiators and faith communities, and was presented to the UN Secretary General. The statement has been issued, translated, and disseminated for other religious leaders and actors to sign after the summit. Show your support by adding your name!