Synod passes motion unanimously and calls the Australian government to take action on climate change

7 July 2014

Two motions were passed at the recent Australian Synod, where the Anglican Church called on its government to pay greater attention to climate change.

The Synod, which met in Adelaide from 29 June-4 July, asked the government “to respect and act upon relevant independent evidence-based scientific advice as a core basis for making decisions” in regard to climate change.

Bishops of the Australian Anglican Church and both lay and clergy representatives from all 23 Australian Dioceses agreed that action needed to be taken to take greater care of our planet.

One motion called on individual Anglicans and Dioceses “to review their commitment to protecting the Earth” as a theological and moral imperative.  They said we should “be prepared to make significant changes in the ways we live and spend.”

The news comes at a time when churches and agencies across the Pacific are calling the world’s leading nations to take action on climate change.  Tagolyn Kabekabe, the Anglican Alliance’s Facilitator for the Pacific, was at the C20 Summit in June, with Anglican Overseas Aid and Anglican Board of Mission, to raise the voices from the Pacific.

Climate change has been highlighted by the Church in Melanesia as a crucial risk for development and indeed for the survival of some island communities.  In 2011 at the Anglican Alliance consultations in the Solomon Islands, climate change was raised as a significant obstacle to economic growth. This report outlines the conversation.

At the Australian Synod this year, Bishop Wilmot from Perth said, “Overwhelmingly climate change affects the poor through impacts now being experienced: food insecurity, crop failures, threats to fresh water reserves and loss of diversity.”

The negative impact of climate change is consistently felt by the most vulnerable.  Now the Church in Australia is standing with those most affected and calling on their government to take action to protect the planet and its people.

Click here for the full press release from the Australian Synod on the motions passed on climate change.