Office of the Chief Rabbi

The Chief Rabbi’s statement on the COP21 Climate Change conference

As politicians and dignitaries converge on Paris to discuss how best to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate against extreme climate change, the Chief Rabbi has released a statement reflecting on our responsibility to safeguard God’s creation.

In the statement, revealed in full below, he urges readers to “protect and steward, not abuse, our environment” as the need for a more committed, global response grows ever more apparent.

“World leaders convene in Paris this week to agree a global response to Climate Change. The challenge before them is unprecedented in scale and of the greatest consequence. The planet is experiencing a long-term warming trend, with the 2011-2015 period projected to be the warmest on record; this due in part to the injurious actions of mankind. Many nations and major corporations are making admirable pledges to scale back greenhouse gas emissions and advance the use of sustainable forms of energy. These are vitally important steps in safeguarding our collective future. Our planet is a beautiful web of ecosystems, weather patterns and natural resources upon which we depend.
With the freedom to sample the fruits of God’s creation comes the responsibility to protect and steward, not abuse, our environment. I pray that the efforts of those participating will be blessed with the far-sighted wisdom to agree outcomes that reflect what is, undeniably, in all of our best interests.”
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