Discover more from Just Creation
News, Boost, Updates
November 12th faith and climate news, events, and more.
Quick nav links for this week’s weekly(ish):
JustCreation prior weeks of this Weekly and other articles.
Upcoming events, webinars & opportunities
Faith voices and Good news this week, and the News Archive.
Boost - Events
Gas Leaks Webinar - From the well to your home. Methane gas leakage is a problem at every point from extraction to transport and in our homes. Last year a coalition including Interfaith voices found hundreds of leaks in the Washington DC area alone (read about it and read the study). Electrify Now has a number of webinars dedicated to electrification and transition (check out their video archives) and will discuss Gas Leaks on November 16th. Register.
Green Teams Webinar. Coming right up from the United Methodist Creation Justice Movement, a spotlight on Green Teams and Local Church Engagement, from conference level green teams to the local church. November 15th.
UCC Environmental Justice webinar: On November 28th, in the tradition of the strength of UCC efforts addressing environmental justice, speakers are Justin J. Pearson and Rev. Dr. Benjamin Chavis, Jr., You Can't Stop Justice.
Farm Bill Webinars. Another set from the UCC, this time addressing the farm bill. There are three in the series, learn more here: Sowing Justice, Cultivating a Just World for All in the Farm Bill. Next one is November 14th.
Creation Writer’s Workshop. There is need and interest from people of faith in writing studies, curriculum, and worship elements to support the preaching and of creation and environmental justice in the local faith community. Check out the resource library at UMCreation Justice, and click here for more information about the group. Next meeting is Thursday November 16th at 10:00am PT / 1:00pm ET. Register.
Fossil Free UMC is launching in a renewed push reimagined for the upcoming 2024 United Methodist General Conference and the present moment. Find more information as things start up at fossilfreeumc.net
If you missed a couple of the latest webinars, you can still catch up with the recordings.
UCC Creation Justice webinar: From Greenwashing to Environmental Justice addressing COP28 and fossil fuel interests
Solar for church and conference. This webinar from the United Methodist Creation Justice Movement focuses on the UMC context, but offers information much more widely from both the Interfaith Solar Campaign and Collective Sun, LLC. Find the recording here: Congregational Solar. Resource materials include informational slides from Nicole Withrow at Collective Sun, and a link to the UM Creation Justice October Newsletter, which is full of solar resources.
Holy Heat Pumps - A Webinar on Heat Pumps for Faith Communities from the UCC and IPL, find the recording here: Holy Heat Pumps! Resource materials include these links to DOE resources, Geothermal Heat Pumps and Air-Source Heat Pumps.
Reports & Studies
Find more reports on the reports page.
COP28 is coming up. As such, look for some big reports published with the latest science on where we stand.
Over the limits—and still more pumping. A major report from the UN and partners details the depth of the peril we face from the ongoing production of fossil fuel. Read from Inside Climate News, Planned Fossil Fuel Production Vastly Exceeds the World’s Climate Goals, ‘Throwing Humanity’s Future Into Question’. Among the 20 top fossil fuel-producing countries, the U.S., Brazil and Saudi Arabia foresee significant increases in domestic oil production, while Russia, India and Indonesia all project substantial increases in coal. From the New York Times (gift link) Nations That Vowed to Halt Warming Are Expanding Fossil Fuels, Report Finds. And from Canada’s CBC, Despite climate pledges, Canada and other fossil fuel producers set to scale up production: report. Read the report.
Not having children. We already know from conversations that young people speak about a reluctance to start families due to their concerns about climate change and environmental disruptions. A new study lays out the factors studied. Read about the study from Phys.org, Ethical, environmental and political concerns about climate change affect reproductive choices, finds study. Read also from The Guardian, More people not having children due to climate breakdown fears, finds research. Read the research.
Herbarium Samples show effects of climate change. We often talk about climate changes in terms of modern measurement. A medieval herbarium offers samples much older for science to study. Read about it from The Guardian, ‘Inestimable importance’: 500-year-old cache of pressed flowers reveals new secrets. Thousands of specimens from the 1500s show huge changes to Bologna’s flora due to climate crisis and migration, say researchers. Read also from Phys.org, Comparison of herbaria collected by botanists over centuries shows impact of climate change. Read the research.
Fracking—Demonstrated Harms. It’s hard to miss the ongoing prophetic warnings and testimony from citizens across the country that have decried fracking for years. Studies move more slowly, but last month a big study from scientists and medical professionals details the harms. Read about the study in Gas Outlook (republished in DeSmog) New study finds overwhelming evidence of harms from fracking, a review of the scientific literature reveals enormous public health, environmental, and climate damage from fracking. Authors say that “no rules or regulations can make these practices safe.” Read the press release. Read the study.
Plastics full of toxic chemicals. Plastic manufacture continues not only unabated but multiplying. This despite the attention to the environmental harm plastics cause. Read about the latest study in New Atlas, Heaps of pharmaceuticals, toxic chemicals found in recycled plastics. Read an article from EcoWatch, ‘No Plastic Chemical Can Be Classified as Safe’: Study Finds Hundreds of Toxins in Recycled Plastics. Read the study.
Greenland - Glacier melt accelerating. The glacial melt continues and is accelerating everywhere. A new study looks specifically at Greenland, which will have an impact on sea level rise. Read about the study from ABC News Australia, University of Copenhagen study says Greenland's glaciers melting at five times previous rates over the last 20 years. Read about it also from Yale Communications 360, Greenland’s Glaciers Melting Twice as Fast as They Were 20 Years Ago. Read the study.
Emissions Regulations Essential. Whatever your take in on what regulations are needed or that none are, the measurable facts highlight that regulation works to address emissions and emissions goals. From The Guardian, Texas produces twice as much methane as better regulated neighbor, study finds. Data shared with Guardian reveals Texas oil and gas fields emitting far more methane than New Mexico, feeding calls for stiffer rules. Sadly the report and other articles are hidden behind paywalls. The report comes from Kayrros.
Faith Voices in the News This Week
Tree Tenders. Among those who care for the trees in various cities in the US are the Germantown Interfaith Power and Light Tree Tenders, nice work PAIPL! Read about the effort from Washington Post, Meet the tree tenders. These volunteers help keep their city streets green.
Solar Churches Leading the Way. Congrats to Shalom Mennonite Fellowship for leading by example and finding ways to inspire others to follow. From CNET, What a Microgrid in Arizona Teaches Us About Energy Resiliency. I toured a solar-powered church that shows how the microgrid model can provide stability for communities in the face of a worsening climate.
Pipeline Witness. Over the vehement objections from citizens, environmental organizations and faith groups across the west, FERC allowed the expansion of the GTN pipeline—from the AP, Feds OK natural gas pipeline expansion in Pacific Northwest over environmentalist protests. Faith groups such as Earth Ministry/Washington Interfaith Power and Light and Muslims for Community Action and Support are once again taking action. From FaVS News in Spokane, Vigil for Community Safety Promotes Faith-Based Opposition to GTN Pipeline Expansion.
Injustice and Witness. Global faith leaders are organizing in Africa with GreenFaith and others. From GreenFaith, Africa Faith Leaders Condemn Mistreatment of Graves by Total. From AP, A TotalEnergies pipeline project in East Africa is disturbing community graves, watchdog says.
COP28 Faith Leaders Meet. Faith groups have always had a presence at COP. Over the last decades, as the peril of continued burning of fossil fuels becomes more known and more urgent, these gatherings have grown. This week’s Global Faith Leaders Summit included over 200 faiths represented. A few reports, from Vatican News, Faith Leaders Summit highlights role of women, youth; From Interfaith Power and Light, Global Religious Leaders Summit in Abu Dhabi; From Al Arabiya English, Global faith leaders unite to declare support for urgent climate action at COP28.
Lots of good news this week!! Find more news in the news archive here.
Caretakers and Stewards. When people step up to seek, study, and restore, good things happen. It is how it is supposed to be, without this, we lose so much. Here are some wins: A number of states are working to save the coastal black-throated green warbler, including North Carolina and Virginia. Care and protection also for the grassland striped skink in Northeastern Queensland, the white-clawed crayfish in North Norfolk, England, the American Marten in Pennsylvania, and the Hellbender in Ohio.
Electrification. Wow! Two to celebrate a green energy transition. First, looking at you, Kentucky! Solar plus batteries and the potential to close seven fossil fuel utilities. From Electrek, Kentucky just greenlit a 900% solar increase plan – why that’s a big deal. Also from Electrek, a big win in Maryland, The world’s largest steel mill will get a second life as a wind turbine factory.
Celebrating Wildlife. A little comedy to endear us to God’s marvelous creation? Yes! First, the 2023 Comedy Wildlife Photos are up for viewing! And bonus, scientists think they have finally figured out exactly what a starfish is, and its weird. From Live Science, 'A disembodied head walking about the sea floor on its lips': Scientists finally work out what a starfish is.
A Bug Snug. Biodiversity is key to restoration of nature and the wellbeing of all living things. A big win in Europe this week with the announcement of a new agreement across the region to restore biodiversity. But there’s something practical here, too, that each of us can do. We can ensure habitat in our own backyards, from The Conversation, Want a healthier lawn? Instead of bagging fall leaves, take the lazy way out and get a more environmentally friendly yard. And, perhaps the most fun at all—and perfect for youth groups—make a bug snug!
Find the news archive here.
Praying this week for a return to good governance and attention to the farm bill. Prayers up.
Consider subscribing to JustCreation—it’s free!
Just to say… my updates are not endorsements, and links are usually third party. Please make your own determinations. My goal here is to amplify the conversation and encourage engagement, learning, and resilience. And of course, to bless your efforts!