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using the language of religion...?

Anne Dalke's picture

one of my brother-in-law environmentalists, who monitors ClimateWireNet, forwarded me this news item. i share it with you as a contribution to our conversations about how to have these difficult conversations. how does the religious language of evil work in the context of discussion about climate change? (of course the Church of England is also thinking of using the language of economics, as it discusses pulling the church's investments out of fossil fuel companies...)

Church of England battles 'great demon of our day,' climate change  (Friday, February 14, 2014)

The Church of England has threatened to terminate its investments in companies that aren't making efforts to mitigate climate change and thus disregard the church's moral, social and theological ideals.

Steven Croft, the bishop of Sheffield, referred to climate change as "a giant evil, a great demon of our day," adding: "Its power is fed by greed, blindness and complacency in the present generation, and we know that this giant wreaks havoc though the immense power of the weather systems, which are themselves unpredictable."

While the church's Ethical Investment Advisory Group has refused to pull the church's money from fossil fuel companies, its deputy chairman told the General Synod that it was contemplating "all options" in developing a future investment policy.

The Rev. Canon Professor Richard Burridge pointed out that the church sold its £3.8 million ($6.3 million) stake in the controversial mining company Vedanta four years ago due to its less-than-perfect handling of human rights issues.

However, he said abruptly divesting from fossil fuel companies is not the solution. He claimed that the church's investments in U.K. companies with weak carbon emissions management had induced 72 percent of them to improve their handling of emissions.

Burridge said the church has a "critical role" in lobbying politicians on climate change to drive commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the United Kingdom 80 percent by 2050 (Sam Jones, London Guardian, Feb. 12). -- ED