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People of Faith to President Biden and Congress: Get Climate Done

Feb 23, 2022 | Press Releases

NEWS RELEASE 

For Immediate Release: February 25, 2022

People of Faith to President Biden and Congress: Get Climate Done

Thousands of faithful petition signers urge passage of $550 billion in bold climate investments

Washington, DC– Today, faith organizations delivered a petition from more than 5,600 people of faith and conscience calling on President Biden, his Cabinet, and every member of Congress to deliver bold investments in climate, environmental justice, jobs, and clean energy. The U.S. House of Representatives previously passed $550 billion in climate and clean energy investments, but they are now stalled in the Senate.

The petition reads, in part, “We need bold action that supports families in our communities and addresses core moral concerns. This includes the most significant climate and clean energy investments EVER – that will create jobs and protect clean air and clean water for all. 

“We have a moral responsibility as a nation, and a sacred task as people of faith, to care for our climate and to leave a safe and thriving world for future generations. That’s why we need to pass the $550 billion in investments that will deliver on climate, justice, jobs, and clean energy.

“President Biden must keep his promise to take meaningful action on climate. He must do all he can to pass the $550 billion in investments that will deliver on climate, justice, jobs, and clean energy and protect our health and environment​.”

Leaders from faith groups who circulated the petition offered the following statements:

Rev. Susan Hendershot, President of Interfaith Power & Light:

“We need President Biden to make climate action a priority and help pass a bold climate bill to protect our health, our environment and our communities. We have a moral responsibility as a nation, and a sacred task as people of faith, to care for our climate, to advance environmental justice, and to leave a safe and thriving world for future generations. Climate can’t wait.”

Marianne Comfort, Justice Coordinator, Anti-Racism and Women for Sisters of Mercy of the Americas:

“Climate change is not an abstract threat to Sisters of Mercy. Over the past few years, sisters and ministries have stepped in to assist battered communities in the aftermath of super storms pummeling the Philippines and Haiti and of damaging floods in Peru and in Iowa here in the U.S. That’s why we continue to advocate for investments in clean technology, climate resilience, and justice for peoples most harmed by the climate crisis and the fossil fuel economy that is contributing to it. We urge President Biden and Congress to find a pathway to passing bold climate legislation to meet this administration’s stated commitment to address this crisis.”

Elizabeth Chun Hye LEE, Executive for Economic and Environmental Justice and Climate Justice Lead, United Methodist Women:

“Women of faith from across the country have been knocking on the doors of the White House and Congress with this message: caring for the earth and our neighbors means passing ambitious climate justice legislation now. As the largest historic emitter of greenhouse gas emissions, the United States has a moral responsibility to do its fair share to address the climate crisis. The $550 billion in climate investments must be directed towards just energy solutions and environmental justice communities most impacted.” 

Rev. Dr. Gerald Durley, Chair, Interfaith Power & Light and Pastor Emeritus of Providence Baptist Church, Atlanta: 

“The faith community is calling on President Biden and Congress not to delay in delivering bold climate and environmental justice investments that meet our communities’ needs. The time is now to invest significantly across the economy, create good-paying jobs and protect God’s Creation. Here in Georgia, Black and Brown people and all communities of color experience the disproportionate impact of environmental racism and its degradation and pollution on a daily basis. Acting on the climate crisis is integral to advancing racial justice.”

Rev. Doug Bland, Executive Director of Arizona Interfaith Power & Light: 

“People of faith and conscience in Arizona have demanded congressional action on climate. These climate investments are a moral imperative in this time when fires rage and rivers run dry. Lives are at stake. Kicking our addiction to fossil fuels and moving to a clean energy economy is the way we love our neighbors on a warming planet. We can’t afford not to act boldly for the future of our children and our precious planet home.”

Codi Norred, Executive Director of Georgia Interfaith Power & Light:

“The $550 billion in climate investments is an essential initial investment in our future and our common home. We have no time to waste. These bold investments in climate and justice both matches the scale of the crisis Georgia communities are facing and acknowledges this as an urgent moral issue.”

David Heayn-Menendez, Executive Director of Pennsylvania Interfaith Power & Light:

“Record-setting extreme heat, wildfires, drought, megastorms, and destructive flooding have touched nearly every corner of the United States making it abundantly clear that we need urgent investments in climate action. These disasters are becoming more frequent and more severe. As people of faith and conscience, we have a moral obligation to work to prevent them from occurring.”

Faith Harris, Co-Director of Virginia Interfaith Power & Light:

“Budgets are moral documents, and where we choose to invest as a nation is an indication of what we value. President Biden and Congress must choose to take moral leadership and demonstrate that they value the health of our families and communities; jobs that can provide good wages; clean air, water, and soil; environmental justice for marginalized and frontline communities; and care for our common home.”

Peter Bakken, Statewide Coordinator of Wisconsin Interfaith Power & Light:

“Climate can’t wait. Every day of inaction costs us dearly. Many Wisconsin communities have experienced the severe impacts of climate change: superstorms, tornadoes, floods, and increasingly intense weather phenomena that cause damage, injury, and loss of life. We are running out of time to avoid even more serious consequences.”

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