“The momentum towards change has come, and it might be stronger than we understand”, wrote Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, general secretary of the World Council of Churches in an Advent message on the eve of the climate talks in Paris.
From the French capital, where he is leading the WCC delegation attending the climate talks COP21, Tveit emphasized that moral perspectives in public debate can, and should, do more by “showing what responsible and sustainable actions are possible”.
A day before the leaders of more than 130 nations in attendance of COP21 will give short statements on how to save the future of our common world, Tveit stressed that there are perspectives of hope to be shared by those who represent the peoples of the world.
“A ‘green shift’ is now more possible than ever”, wrote Tveit, hailing progress with renewable energy initiatives and referring to the withdrawal of investments from fossil fuel industries.
“Many larger companies understand this development and are making decisions towards ending the use of fossil energy in the next five to 15 years, a great shift from the previously projected 30-40 years”, he wrote.
Tveit also pointed to the possibility of moving faster and far beyond the pledges the countries bring with them to Paris, and revealed some of his expectations for COP21, saying that those who come to Paris “hold the potential to make efforts and decisions these days that will prepare a better world”.
Echoing the main demands of several faith organizations attending COP21, Tveit referred to the hope for an ambitious and fair agreement reflecting the urgent need to really focus on climate justice. He thus underlined that the moral discourse should be focused on making decisions about the climate “grounded in the principles of justice”.
“In Norwegian we say: the snowball is rolling, faster every day. Indeed, the momentum towards change has come”, Tveit writes.