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Environmental Advocacy

Current campaign: Give it Up for the Earth!

Once again, our ecumenical justice partners at Citizens for Public Justice are inviting church groups across Canada to take part in their Lenten “Give It Up for the Earth” postcard campaign. Each postcard includes a pledge to personal climate action and a call for a more robust national climate policy. The postage-paid cards can be dropped in the nearest mailbox, and CPJ staff will deliver them en masse to the office of the federal environment minister.

The diocesan office has ordered a supply of these postcards. If you’re interested in having your parish participate in this campaign, contact Elin Goulden, Social Justice & Advocacy Consultant, at egoulden@toronto.anglican.ca or 416-363-6021, ext. 240 (1-800-668-8932).

Carbon pricing

Carbon pricing is a key part of addressing climate change, and it’s not anti-conservative. In a 2014 opinion piece, former Reform Party leader Preston Manning proposed that “for any economic activity, especially the production of energy, we should identify its negative environmental impacts, devise measures to avoid, mitigate or adapt to those impacts, and include the costs of those measures in the price of the product. It’s the idea behind using carbon pricing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.” Cap-and-trade is exactly such a market-based approach to reducing greenhouse gases, while financing our shift to renewable sources of energy, which has the potential for growing our economy.

The matter is urgent. Recently, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a new report stating that we need “unprecedented political commitment” between now and 2030 to keep global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius, or our world will not be able to avoid the most drastic impacts of climate change. And these will be economic and humanitarian impacts, as well as biological ones. A 2017 report from the Bank of Canada projected that climate change would cost the Canadian economy more than $20 billion annually by the 2050s unless we reduce our carbon footprints. Already, climate change is costing Canada’s economy billions in terms of response to disasters like wildfires and flooding, insurance payouts, damage to infrastructure, and lost agricultural productivity.

Cancelling one of our best tools to mitigate this foreseeable loss is the very definition of financial and governmental irresponsibility. Ontarians have a right to expect our government to take care of our economy and our resources, not to jeopardize them.

Statements by Anglican and other Church leaders