Churches’ mission to save the planet

Independent, 8 May 2015:

It appears that religious leaders have suddenly woken up to the dangers  posed by climate change to God’s creation (A third of Catholics will go green if Pope does May 4) Pope Francis worries that  climate change will affect the poorest countries, but he seems oblivious to the much stronger  link between climate change and overpopulation, an issue where the Catholic Church could make a difference.

Meanwhile the Church of England announces its intention of disinvesting in fossil fuels, which sounds laudable until you realise that they are only proposing to sell £12 million worth of investments in tar sands and other methods of extraction with a large carbon footprint. Extraction is not the main issue. It is the burning of more than 10 billion tonnes of carbon annually that is the problem. They need to get out of that.

Dr Robin Russell-Jones
Stoke Poges, Buckinghamshire

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The Lib Dems had their chance to make a difference and it may not come again

Independent on Sunday, 3 May 2015:

Undoubtedly the Coalition’s environmental record would have been much worse without the Lib Dems in charge at DECC (Keep Clegg in coalition, says green industry April 26). However the reactionary wing of the Conservative Party, better known as the fossil fuel lobby, can claim greater success. Over the past 5 years the cheapest form of renewable energy, onshore wind, has been stopped, feed-in tariffs for solar energy have been cut, tighter building standards were scrapped, fracking companies have been offered generous tax breaks, and planning restrictions irksome to oil and gas companies have been lifted. More damaging still is that the UK government opposed EU proposals on carbon emissions, so that the target of providing 27% of electricity using renewables by 2030 now applies to the EU as a whole and is not country specific. This makes it unenforceable. The Lib Dems had their chance to make a difference and it may not come again.

Dr Robin Russell-Jones
Stoke Poges, Buckinghamshire