April 20, 2018
Oxford, UK — In celebration of Earth Day, GreenFaith has announced the inaugural partner organizations in Living the Change, a globally-connected community of religious and spiritual institutions working together with sustainable consumption experts to champion and mobilize sustainable ways of life.
Living the Change is a faith-driven, evidence-based initiative designed to address the growing environmental challenges for our shared home. Since the commencement of this collective effort at COP23, the UN Climate Change Conference convened in November 2017, Living the Change has cultivated a broad-based coalition of partner organizations who are collaborating to shape, drive, and amplify our vision for a worldwide community of conscience and practice to drive lifestyle-related reductions of greenhouse gas emissions.
The multi-faith sustainable living initiative will foster and quantify three areas of high-impact behavior changes that can each save up to 0.8 tons of carbon dioxide per person per year. Through commitments in diet, transportation, and energy use, Living the Change invites individuals to fortify healthy, balanced relationships that help sustain the earth. Given that close to six billion people identify with a religion (Pew Research Center, 2017), the opportunity for these groups to create meaningful change through collective action cannot be ignored.
"This is the first time in history that such a broad coalition of religious organizations from around the world is cooperating to promote sustainable lifestyles and behavior change," said Caroline Bader, Director of Living the Change. "We are convinced that, together, we can bring our commitments to scale, and work towards a flourishing world. Because every person counts, every lifestyle change counts, and every day counts."
Living the Change is organized by GreenFaith, an interfaith environmental organization whose mission is to educate, organize, and mobilize people of various religious and spiritual backgrounds to become environmental leaders. Serving as the central coordinator for Living the Change, GreenFaith oversees a diverse network of Implementing Partners who represent world-renowned organizations offering leadership throughout faith-based communities. The inaugural Implementing Partners in Living the Change are:
According to Gopal D. Patel, Director of the Bhumi Project : "Hindus are encouraged to lead lives that uphold and sustain the natural order and balance of the world. Sustainability, therefore, is a central pillar of Hindu life."
These core tenets of sustainable living manifest across a wide range of religious and spiritual traditions. "Evangelicals caring for God’s creation know that our faith-consistent personal choices are important," explained Dr. Chris Elisara, Director of the Creation Care Task Force for the World Evangelical Alliance. "Choices like eating more plant-based meals or changing our driving or flying habits are not easy, and they are often counter- cultural, but they are ways we can be faithful to God’s calling on our lives to care for the gift of creation."
"The Buddhist tradition teaches that each of us is deeply woven into the web of life; we are not separate," affirmed Kristin Barker, Director and Co-Founder of One Earth Sangha. "The suffering of others is ultimately our suffering, so each of us has a direct interest in reversing climate change."
Nana Firman, Co-Founder of Global Muslim Climate Network, also highlights the need for fruitful cooperation: "We live at a time of unprecedented catastrophic destruction to people and the natural world. As Muslims, we are obligated by our faith and by our shared humanity to stand up and make the changes necessary to avoid further future disasters. Together with people of other faiths, we must show that there is a better way as stewards upon this earth."
Living the Change also works in collaboration with a wide-ranging coalition of organizations who are providing leadership at the nexus of spiritual guidance and environmental action. These entities include the Brahma Kumaris World Spiritual University, the Franciscan Action Network, and Living Witness. Similarly-situated institutions across all religions, spiritualties, and faith-based ways of life are encouraged to contact Living the Change and begin a conversation about joining this journey towards sustainable living.
Living the Change is a multi-faith initiative on sustainable living supported by KR Foundation. Through commitments in the areas of diet, transportation, and energy use, Living the Change seeks to create a worldwide community of conscience and practice to drive lifestyle-related reductions of greenhouse gas emissions. For more information, please visit www.livingthechange.net.
GreenFaith is an interfaith environmental organization whose mission is to educate, organize, and mobilize people of diverse religious and spiritual backgrounds to become environmental leaders. Through innovative programs focused on training, campaigning, and organizing, GreenFaith helps people put their beliefs into action for the Earth. For more information, please visit www.greenfaith.org.
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