from “all of the above” to energy from Above

EPA public hearings on the (finally!) proposed Carbon Pollution Standards for Existing Power Plants took place the last week in July.  Remarks by PA IPL supporters vary enormously, and are worth reading.  The remarks vary enormously, and are worth reading.  When you’re inspired, submit a written comment of your own.   

621645_10152203441460105_2140971170_oPennsylvania Interfaith Power & Light is made up of individuals and communities of faith, responding to climate change in active, faithful hope.  We are drawn to this work by the scripture and wisdom of our traditions.  We turn to different sources for the words, but they carry a shared call to care for Creation — for the world and all who dwell in it— and to particular care for the most vulnerable people.

Climate change magnifies ills that faith communities have long responded to: food insecurity, water insecurity, disease, conflict, and many natural disasters, and we are stepping up again.   We know that the EPA’s charge is to protect Continue reading

People’s Climate March – NYC – 9/21/2014

image-1-f255b6faYesterday Rev. Cheryl Pyrch (a member of the PA IPL Board, and a Philly PA IPL leader) attended an organizing meeting for the People’s Climate March, initiated by and now sponsored by dozens of organizations, from the Sierra Club to churches and synagogues and labor unions.   The occasion is a United Nations summit on the climate crisis, called by  Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.  It’s our chance to show the world we care, and we need to make it BIG:    “to change everything, we need everyone.”  It will be peaceful and inclusive – join us for this historic event!

Faith voices:
Faith advocates have been working with world leaders for years on climate change and climate treaties.  We’ve recently learned that the World Council of Continue reading

Renewing the Covenant

At our Annual Conference on October 26th, Climate Justice: Faith in Action, one of our presenters will be Victoria Furio, who is on the staff at Union Theological Seminary in New York City and convenes the Climate Justice initiative there.  Union made the news recently as the first seminary to divest from fossil fuels.  With Victoria’s permission, we’re reposting this lovely piece she wrote for the Union Forum.  Join us on October 26th, from 2-6 p.m. at Summit Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia to hear more. 

"Storm" by Fanny Schertzer - Own work. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons -

by Victoria Furio

When we see the water ─that most sacred of elements─ disappear from rivers and streams
When we hear the wind howl in yet another massive storm
We will know the future is here.

For many, that future is now, whether it be India, Australia, the Philippines, or the Mid-West, repeatedly ravaged by floods of biblical proportions; or relentless drought creating deserts in Africa, famine in Somalia, and fears of a new Dust Bowl in California and the Southwest. As a warming earth melts Himalayan glaciers, the water of life will cease to trickle into the great Asian rivers from the Ganges to the Yangtze. Where will 1.5 billion people flee to in their desperation?

Not only are humans at risk, but every animal and plant, bird and fish, will soon face the struggle to survive. With predictions of global temperature rises approaching 3ºC as early as 2030 , erratic, extreme weather events will become the norm, coupled by water scarcity and the collapse of food
Continue reading

St. Francis and the “universal house”

 This post by board member (and past president) Sylvia Neely first appeared on the Creation Corner page of  the Episcopal Church in Central Pennsylvania’s website.1913244_10106188579394174_2017794221_o

Some years ago, I was a member of a group at my church that got together to discuss environmental issues.  We read and discussed a book that somebody had recommended that I truly disliked.  Environmental questions were presented as cultural questions that required us to rethink the way we lived and that especially extolled eastern and Native American spiritual values.  I kept protesting to the group that we surely had strong Christian traditions that would help guide us to a better way of living in God’s creation.  Several years later, another group at the same church read a book that exemplified what I was looking for.

CareForCreationcoverThe book is entitled Care for Creation:  A Franciscan Spirituality of the Earth.  Two of the authors are steeped in Franciscan learning.  Ilia Delio, O.S.F., is a professor and author.  Keith Douglass Warner, O.F.M., teaches in an interdisciplinary Environmental Studies Institute.  The third author, Pamela Wood, is a retreat facilitator whose expertise provides a strong practical side to the book.  So the book, though challenging at times, balanced a strong understanding of science with a wonderful expression of Franciscan spirituality and the way to incorporate it into one’s life.

For me, one of the most important concepts discussed in the book was Continue reading

Fracking and the Green Stuff

Bill and Tabitha fracking rallyLoretta and LoraxRachel Mark with signPA IPL speaks about fracking as we do all things: as it relates to climate change, and from there, as it affects Creation and particularly the most vulnerable people.

Jump down to hear about a couple of recent public demonstrations that PA IPL leaders participated in on May 6 and June 17 (including a prayer by Rev. Loretta Collins), check out our statement on fracking ( Marcellus Principles Sept.19.2011PAIPL Marcellus Exec Summary), or read on for a bit of current background.  When you’re done, pop over to Interfaith Power & Light’s action page to add your name to the list of people of faith urging the EPA to tighten restrictions on fracking. Continue reading

Prayer and Protest

BiYlsVSIMAAy9l0a guest post by PA IPL member Eileen Flanagan (in the purple coat, left)  We invite members to share their stories of experience at the intersection of faith and climate change.

Two times now, I’ve publically prayed in the midst of a potentially scary protest, and both times have been powerful experiences, convincing me that rooting my work for climate justice in my faith is not only right, but more effective than the secular activism of my youth. Both experiences came through my work with Earth Quaker Action Team (EQAT, pronounced “equate”), but I think the lessons could apply to any faith-based activism.

Founded by Quakers with the mission of using nonviolent direct action to work for a just and sustainable world, EQAT had agreed to lead civil disobedience in Philadelphia to show the depth of public Continue reading