“Climate changes can only be addressed in a fair and sustainable way if it is proper dynamic between the care for the environment and the need for more justice,” said Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, general secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC). “Neither in the North nor in the South can the challenges for the globe and the one humanity be seen primarily only from one of these perspectives,” he added.
Tveit shared these views on 5 September at a consultation on climate justice organized by the Latin American Council of Churches (CLAI) in Barranquilla, Colombia. The WCC general secretary is currently in Colombia, leading a WCC delegation as part of a “pilgrimage of justice and peace” – a call issued by the WCC Busan Assembly in 2013.
Affirming the call for “Climate justice now!” the WCC general secretary stressed that climate change can only be addressed in a fair and sustainable way when there exists a proper relationship between care for the environment and provision for social justice.
Speaking about the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 21) in Paris this December, Tveit said that “human rights should be strongly emphasized at the international legal treaty that needs to be adopted in Paris at COP 21. And they should also be strengthened in national legal frameworks to build more just societies.”
The WCC has been strongly engaged in addressing specifically climate change issues since the late 1980s, linking the integrity of creation to economic justice and peace.