This issue of response focuses on climate justice and supplements the 2016 United Methodist Women mission study Climate Justice: A Call to Hope and Action edited by Pat Watkins. In the cold of winter you’ve likely heard someone joke, “Where’s global warming when you need it?” For many years United Methodist Women has focused on global warming and, more accurately, climate change. You and I know climate change is not a joke. Melting glaciers, sea rise, increased frequency and intensity of extreme weather events are all things we’ve seen in our lifetime. We’ve experienced droughts, species extinction, changes in agricultural success. Both natural and human factors can cause these changes, but human activity, it’s now abundantly clear, has intensified any natural patterns of climate change by our overreliance on fossil fuels coupled with deforestation.
Climate justice focuses on the communities most affected by the effects of climate change. Climate change disproportionately impacts those least responsible for its progression, those already marginalized and discriminated against. Heat waves, floods, storms, pollution prove a greater risk to those without resources of safe homes, health care or access to other services. The caretaking of God’s creation does not just involve respecting the earth but ensuring the well-being of all earth’s inhabitants.
I hope this issue inspires and empowers you to learn more about climate justice and the individual and collective actions you can take to be a true caretaker of all of
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