Recent General Convention Resolutions on Creation Care and Environmental Justice
Affirm Commitment to Address Environmental Racism

Concurred as Substituted

Final text:

Resolved, That the 79th General Convention affirm the need for governments, private industry and all people to act to protect the health of all persons from unsafe and unhealthy exposures to air and water pollution, toxic substances, or radiation in their food, water supply, living quarters, and work places; and be it further

Resolved, That the Church recommit to the excellent work done by previous General Conventions of The Episcopal Church, specifically resolutions 2000-D005, 2012-B023, 2012-C079, and 2015-C013 and that General Convention affirm that no community, especially poor communities, those who live closest to the land in subsistence cultures, and members of marginalized ethnic groups, should bear a disproportionate risk of environmental pollution or degradation; and advocate for and support policies that protect these populations and the sanctity of communities and the livelihood of future generations from the disparate impact of climate change and environmental degradation; and be it further

Resolved, That General Convention direct the formation of a Task Force, not to exceed twelve people, including attorneys, health professionals, environmental professionals, and bishops and other clergy to study and report specific recommendations for appropriate changes in federal, state, or local law so that effective judicial remedies, based on a showing of disproportionate health or environmental impact on those living closest to the land in subsistence cultures, ethnic minorities or poor communities, can be obtained to address unwise governmental decisions with respect to land use, industrial, energy and transportation development, and application of environmental standards; and be it further

Resolved, That the Task Force will report to Executive Council by the end of 2019; and be it further

Resolved, That Program, Budget and Finance consider a budget allocation of $30,000 for the work of the Task Force for the Triennium.

Citation:
General Convention, Journal of the General Convention of…The Episcopal Church, Austin, 2018 (New York: General Convention, 2018), pp. 372-373.

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Call for Shareholder Advocacy for Environmental Impact

Concurred as Amended

Final Text:
Resolved, That the 79th General Convention of The Episcopal Church call upon the Executive Council Committee on Corporate Social Responsibility (CCSR), in conjunction with the Church Pension Fund, to identify 10 companies within our portfolio that significantly impact the environment, and initiate shareholder engagement to advocate for the inclusion of an expert in sustainability on their boards; and be it further

Resolved, That the General Convention make this a priority for the triennium as the Stewardship of Creation pillar of the Jesus Movement by authorizing an expense of $15,000 to be treated as investment management expenses.

Citation:
General Convention, Journal of the General Convention of…The Episcopal Church, Austin, 2018 (New York: General Convention, 2018), p. 1092.

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Resources

The Episcopal Church has developed the Episcopal Covenant to Care of Creation.  The Covenant focuses on specific action steps for Loving Formation, Liberating Advocacy, and Life-Giving Conservation.  Many other resources are also available on The Episcopal Church website

Christian Formation Resources

Operation Creation VBS was created by Interfaith Power and Light.  Along with the Genesis creation accounts, the curriculum draws on a variety of creation stories (i.e., Native American, other faith traditions, children’s literature) when speaking of the earth’s beginnings. This is done in order to raise awareness that many different cultures have thought about how the earth began. While it is not possible to make people care about the earth, it is possible to help them understand what we are doing to the earth and what we can do differently and better. This curriculum attempts to do this by connecting with the individual and meeting him or her in a familiar place.

https://www.interfaithpowerandlight.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/11/operation_creation.pdf

Sharing and Protecting God’s Creation is a three-week Environmental Curriculum for Sunday Schools using the Workshop Rotation Learning Model. Goals are: 1) To contribute to the children’s awareness of how all of creation is linked together, how humans depend on each other, how other life depends on humans, 2) To give children the Biblical underpinnings for their increasing awareness of the need to protect the environment, and 3) To drive home the message that God needs us to set things right. God cannot do it without us.

https://westonucc.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/curriculum.pdf

Wild Wonder VBS was created for elementary-age children by A Rocha, a Christian conservation organization that works to help Christians better understand our role in God’s creation and our responsibilities to help it flourish.

Creation Care and Environmental Justice Task Force

Diocesan Council in February 2021 voted unanimously to approve a proposal to create the Creation Care and Environmental Justice Task Force in the Diocese of Southern Ohio.

Current Members of the leadership team:

Catherine Duffy catherineteresaduffy@gmail.com
The Rev. Craig Foster cfospe85@gmail.com
Ariel Milller arielmillerwriter@gmail.com
Rich Rastetter rich.rastetter@gmail.com
Ken Wright pkenwright3@gmail.com
Bill Ubbes (Diocesan Council Liaison) Bill.Ubbes@parsons.com

To become involved in this ministry, reach out to any member listed above. There is much to learn and much to do.

Christianity as an Earth-Honoring Faith: A Call to Public Discipleship

A webinar in honor of Earth Day and Rogation Days, sponsored by the Faith in Life Commission of the Diocese of Southern Ohio, the Creation Care and Environmental Justice Task Group of the Diocese of Southern Ohio, and the Creation Care Ministry Team of All Saints Episcopal Church in New Albany. April 25, 2021

Energy Efficiency Grant/Loan Program

The Church Trustees, along with the Creation Care and Environmental Justice Task Force, have created a grant opportunity for diocesan congregations to take advantage of energy efficiency measures. This grant opportunity is open to all congregations to make their facilities more energy efficient and create less of a burden on creation. Each congregation can apply for a $10,000 grant to improve the energy efficiency of their parish along with applying for a $10,000 loan at 3% interest payable monthly over five (5) years. The application period runs from July 1, 2021 to December 31, 2022.

Learn more
Episcopal Church news on creation care
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If you are aware of other helpful resources, please share them with the Creation Care and Environmental Justice Task Force. Emails are listed above.