Unitarians vow watch on global warming: Individual and community actions outlined

July 25, 2006

The Unitarian Universalist Association voted at its annual meeting to keep the fight against global warming high on its list of priorities in both personal and congregational practices.

A “Statement of Consciousness,” approved by General Assembly delegates, urges America’s nearly 215,000 Unitarian Universalists to “pledge to ground our missions and ministries in reverence for this earth and responsibility to it.

“We declare by this Statement of Conscience that we will not acquiesce to the ongoing degradation of life that human actions are leaving to our children and grandchildren,” read the statement approved during the June 21-25 meeting in St. Louis.

Unitarians Universalists are encouraged to take simple steps such as planting trees and recycling. Congregations building new facilities are urged to seek certification from the U.S. Green Building Council Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.

On a larger scale, the denomination will push the U.S. government to ratify and comply with the Kyoto Protocol, an international treaty that aims to reduce the emission of the greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming.

“When we discuss environmental issues with politicians, we want to ask them frankly what their position [on the Kyoto Protocol] is,” said Janet Hayes, a UUA spokeswoman. “This is a question of public accountability in advocacy work.”

The General Assembly brought out nearly 4,300 Unitarian Universalists from about 1,020 congregations nationwide. –Religion News Service