Photo courtesy of Chris Donaghue
When I first discovered Thomas Berry, world religion scholar and renowned author, my eyes opened wide as I felt a void being filled. Over the past 50 years, scientific findings about the creation of the universe, earth, life and consciousness have provided answers about our origins. Thomas Berry’s work culminated in the call for a new creation story, one based on scientific fact and not just faith. He urges us to move from a scientific-technological focus to one based on ecological principles; one founded on recognizing the intrinsic value of nature. The whole planet is one complex ecosystem all working in harmony and self-supporting, thus enabling the earth to maintain conditions suitable for life and its evolution. James Lovelock calls this the Gaia Theory. Everything is interconnected. Berry felt the old creation story for Christians, Genesis, served its purpose through history, but new scientific discoveries beg for a new creation story. Continue reading
by Esme Murdock, Ph.D.
I am a scholar who researches environmental justice, African American/African Diasporic, and Indigenous environmental philosophies. How I came to be a scholar is a story written by my desire to understand myself as a black woman living on Indigenous lands in a settler colony and how to move through the world in a way that keeps me, and others whole. This is a long and unfinished story, but I will share part of it with you; a narrative brimming with the presence, memory, land, water, and peoples I call my relations. Continue reading
Are houses of worship prepared for the current and coming natural disasters caused by climate change? If not, they need to be. During 2017, the faith community was in the heart of the hurricanes in the east and the wildfires in the west. They provided comfort and support to their ravaged congregants and local communities. They need to be prepared to do more and not be lulled into complacency by lack of awareness or political bent. Continue reading
Our guest blogger today, Seema Ahmed, is a member of the West Cobb Islamic Center in Marietta, Georgia, sharing her practices during Ramadan that inform her commitments to Earth care.
Ramadan, which begins Thursday, is the holy month in which Muslims refrain from eating and drinking from sunrise to sunset. This is a month where one can evaluate where they are in life and how to be a better person, while strengthening their relationship with God. It is also a reminder to count your blessings and to give charity to those in need. Continue reading
A reflection by Valerie Rawls
African-Americans developed what in modern terms might be regarded an environmental ethos long before the environmental justice movement, before the civil rights movement, and before they were emancipated and had citizenship rights conferred upon them.
– Mart A. Stewart, To Love the Wind and the Rain
Since 1987, the environmental justice movement has been trying to address inequalities that are the result of human settlement, industrial contamination, and unsustainable development. The United Church of Christ Commission for Racial Justice (CRJ) published a decisive report exposing the gross disregard for people of color as toxic waste landfills were sited in their communities throughout the nation. Toxic Waste and Race in the United States proved to be a critical foundation for the environmental justice movement that continues today. Continue reading
Over the last several years, universities, foundations and the faith community have led the way in eliminating investments in the fossil fuel industry. They represent 54 percent of new commitments. Since December 2016, institutions with assets of 6 trillion dollars have made commitments to divest from fossil fuel investments. This includes 688 institutions and 58,000 individuals according to the Go Fossil Free website. Two notable organizations making commitments are the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the World Council of Churches. About 28 percent of the commitments are from religious institutions. Over half the commitments come from outside the USA. The fossil fuel divestment movement is the fastest growing divestment movement in history.
Generational change is a given in business, politics and life. In the early 1960s, President John Kennedy’s ascendency to the peak of government was a sign a new generation was in charge with new ideas and direction. The Kennedy administration fought for civil rights and gave America the vision of landing a man on the moon.
The Baby Boom generation (1946 to 1964) protested against the Vietnam War during the Johnson and Nixon administrations and eventually brought that decade long conflict to an end. Our nation’s youth have redirected errant policies for the better on several occasions over the past half century.
By Valerie Rawls
I am the granddaughter of a preaching Mississippi sharecropper, who was the son of enslaved and emancipated parents. My grandfather straddled two cultures–one African with limited to no ties to Africa, and the other American. Continue reading
On April 20, 2010 one of the most catastrophic environmental disasters unfolded in the Gulf of Mexico when the Deepwater Horizon oil rig blew up and unleashed a geyser of oil buried a mile below the surface. By the time it ended 87 days later, an estimated 130 million gallons of oil spewed into the Gulf of Mexico’s bountiful waters and disrupted thriving ecosystems from Texas to Florida. Had the leak continued, the oil could have gone around Florida and likely ended up in the Gulf Stream contaminating the entire East coast’s shorelines and coastal habitats. In fact, a 2016 University of Central Florida study found dissolved oil from the spill all the way to Sanibel Island, Florida. Continue reading
Atlanta women surprised by billboards honoring their clean-energy work
Mark Ruffalo’s ATL100 campaign applauds “Atlanta Power Women” for their leadership on clean energy
ATLANTA – Three Atlanta women got big surprises today, and if you look up as you’re driving around town, you might see them. Mark Ruffalo’s ATL100 campaign surprised these “Atlanta Power Women” by unveiling billboards honoring their leadership in advancing 100% clean energy.
The billboards underline the leading role that women are playing in making clean energy more accessible and affordable for all people, regardless of income, zip code or race.