Stop Climate Chaos : 2011 Campaign Idea

The Stop Climate Chaos coalition meet tomorrow to present and hear suggestions on Climate Change campaigning in 2011.

How are we going to make it zoom, people ?

From some of my project work with faith groups, I had this suggestion to make :-


Alliance with Ethical Investment groups

“Put your money where your mouth is”

Following on from the Church of England selling its shares in Vedanta :-

http://www.minesandcommunities.org/article.php?a=9871

it was hoped that the Church of England investment portfolio would continue to be “cleaned up”. But there appears to be a long way to travel.

The Anglican Communion worldwide includes environmental protection as its “Fifth Mark of Mission”, and the Church of England is part of the international interfaith “seven year plans” :-

http://www.anglican.ca/search/faq/037.htm
http://www.cofe.anglican.org/news/pr10009.html

but the Church Commissioners report in the last year has confirmed that the Church of England still holds shares in companies such as BP, responsible for ecological devastation of the Gulf of Mexico :-

http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/node/12234

Groups such as the Alliance of Religions and Conservation, the Ecumenical Council for Corporate Responsibility and National Ethical Investment Week are all active in encouraging communities to put their money where their mouth is – and the faith communities have a very large amount to play with :-

http://www.arcworld.org/about_ARC.htm
http://www.eccr.org.uk/AboutUs
http://www.neiw.org/about

With the launch of the Green Investment Bank – even though severely under-capitalised – there is a chance to tie up the questions to the answers.

If every consumer choice were a green choice, there would be no environmental problem. The only way to reach that point is for every contract, every stock and share, every procurement order, every transport vehicle, every energy source and every material resource to be green.

The choices that companies make in the business they conduct is based on the premise that people want what they sell so much they are prepared to invest directly in them as well as buy their products.

There are several levers for change here. Investment, such as pension funds, if moved in bulk, can have a de-securitisation effect on unsustainable business models. Not so much a “boycott” as a “landslide” of change.

The faith communities have already proved that they can change international commerce with the Fair Trade movement. Now it’s time for the Green Investment movement.


The Messiah : With Us

The Messiah, the Mashiach, the Maitreya, the Mahdi, the returning Krishna or Christ, whatever you call him, a lot of people are waiting for The One, who will lead us out of darkness and trouble, and rule and guide.

Some mock this as hope deferred, or a narrative that laments how bad our times are, and how things could be better, if only God or his Prophet would intervene. Can we rescue the situation without divine intervention ?

Will the Blessed, Anointed One (re)appear on television ? The Revelation of St John (1:7) says, “Look ! He comes with the clouds of heaven. And everyone will see him – even those who pierced him. And all the nations of the world will mourn for him. Yes ! Amen !”

But what if the Messiah is already with us – somehow present but hidden from normal sight, yet there in everything that we experience ? Does he have a spiritual corporeality ? Is he guiding us in how we think, what we say, write, pray for, work for ?

Many philosophers and religious people are turning their thoughts to issues of Climate Change, in a movement of great unity, despite their spiritual differences, political and ideological differences, and a wide range of views on how best to resist the evils of the world.

If the latest recording purporting to be from Osama bin Laden is genuine, it is clear his concern is turning towards Climate Change, asking the global Muslim community to save the people of Pakistan from the dreadful catastrophe of inundation aggravated by Global Warming trends.

Osama bin Laden is not a saint, but his heart is turned towards the suffering of others, so he too has been touched by the spiritual Messiah, the ever-present Holy One of God.

How to do the work of the Lord, who has power in gentleness and patience, and who is mighty, yet only touches the Earth with warming sunlight ? How to be the eyes, hands and feet of the Spirit of Life ?

The more people desire to do the will of God (or the Demands of Ethics) the more chasms we can bridge between our faiths and our economic beliefs and our technology choices.

Climate Change is an amazing opportunity to rise above the chaos and conflict of centuries and work together for the common good.

We don’t need to see the Messiah to know he is with us.