MWC calls for global energy transition

Earth in all its diversity, vitality and abundance is a gift that has been overshadowed by neglect, exploitation and unsustainable consumption.

Anabaptist values, by contrast, call for stewardship (thoughtful care-taking), simplicity and the dignity of all persons created in the image of God. On behalf of Mennonite World Conference, the Creation Care Task Force (CCTF) has endorsed the interfaith call for a Fossil Fuel Non-Proliferation Treaty. 

“To be good caretakers of our common home, we must act and phase out the production of fossil fuels,” reads the interfaith letter.  

It calls on governments to lay out a binding global plan to  

  1. End expansion of any new coal, oil or gas production; 
  2. Phase-out existing production of fossil fuels in a manner that is fair and equitable; 
  3. Ensure a global just transition to 100% access to renewable energy globally.  

The letter, directed at national governments around the world, was first delivered to world leaders at COP27 (2022’s United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt). This call, begun in 2015 by Pacific Island countries whose borders are rapidly being reduced by rising oceans, attempts to spur nations to address the production of oil, gas and coal and to negotiate a fair transition to renewable energy. 

“It is important that Anabaptists make our voices heard in support of actions that care for the planet,” says Doug Graber Neufeld, CCTF chair. “Moving away from fossil fuels is one of the most effective ways to support our brothers and sisters around the world whose livelihoods are threatened by climate change.” 

“For Anabaptists from the Global South, the production and use of non-renewable natural resources such as fossil fuels, gas and coal raises various ethical problems, including our responsibilities to future generations. We are challenged not only to seek alternative energies but also to ensure that everyone can enjoy the abundance of natural resources fairly. We believe that God’s creation can fulfill every human need, but not human greed,” says Nindyo Sasongko, CCTF Asia Representative.  

“All of creation is God’s work of love,” says Thomas R Yoder Neufeld, Faith & Life Commission chair. “To turn from our heedless exploitation of fossil fuels is not only in our human self-interest, but more importantly participation in God’s love for the world.”

“Anabaptists believe that human patterns of greed, selfishness and overconsumption are sin which require repentance and transformation. This is spiritual work and it is also societal work. This call for fossil fuel non-proliferation asks governments to use their power to reduce the effects of these sins on the most vulnerable, and all of humanity,” says César García, MWC General Secretary.  

MWC joins hundreds of other faith groups from the Laudato Si’ Movement (Roman Catholic) to the Parliament of the World’s Religions in calling upon governments to develop and implement a Fossil Fuel Non-proliferation treaty.  

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