Peter Burrows, Bishop of Doncaster column: All have a role in fighting climate change

Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton during the 2015 Monaco Grand Prix at the Circuit de Monaco, Monte Carlo, Monaco. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday May 24, 2015. See PA story AUTO Monaco. Photo credit should read: David Davies/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use in print media and internet only. No mobile or TV. Commercial use with prior consent. Call +44 (0)1158 447447 for further information. Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use in print media and internet only.
Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton during the 2015 Monaco Grand Prix at the Circuit de Monaco, Monte Carlo, Monaco. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday May 24, 2015. See PA story AUTO Monaco. Photo credit should read: David Davies/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use in print media and internet only. No mobile or TV. Commercial use with prior consent. Call +44 (0)1158 447447 for further information. Use subject to restrictions. Editorial use in print media and internet only.
0
Have your say

Last weekend, I was doing battle with myself as I enjoyed the pleasures of the Formula 1 Grand Prix at Silverstone.

Most of my family and many friends do not share my love of Formula 1.

As I describe the beauty of the cars, the aerodynamic design and the engineering, I can see them looking blank.

I think the cars are things of beauty – as they say, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

But, I am conscious the cars use enormous amounts of fuel and produce emissions that cannot be good for the environment.

So I wrestle with something I enjoy and find fascinating, with a desire to protect the environment.

This is an issue most, if not all of us, have to deal with every day.

When we make trips by car, bus, train or plane, we are conscious they will be giving off high level emissions.

When we use household items or heat our homes, we are aware they are, in the main, not carbon neutral.

We will continue to wrestle with this serious issue and in our own way try to find ways of compensating.

What we do may seem insignificant in a global sense, but doing something however small to counterbalance environmental damage must have an impact.

From a Christian perspective, the environment is God’s gift to everyone and we have a responsibility toward the poor, future generations and humanity as a whole.

Our duties toward the environment are linked with responsibilities to each other.

We cannot consider ourselves in isolation to others.

Connected to this is the issue of consumerism.

In our desire to have and to enjoy, we consume the resources of the earth in an excessive and disordered way.

We have a capacity to effect change and in some ways create the world through personal endeavour.

This is a dangerous delusion, as it ignores the Christian belief we co-operate with God in the work of creation.

We have a responsibility to look after the beauty of God’s creation and combat environmental issues and how we play our part in protecting the environment for all who will follow us.

I hope the Paris Climate Conference in December does not end in failure.

If each of us plays our small part, politicians and world leaders must do theirs by negotiating an agreement on cutting emissions, ensuring poorer countries can respond to floods and drought.

As we wrestle with our own consciences and as we try to resolve environmental crisis in our own ways, we should call on our Government to be a major player in these talks and not to withdraw from the table until a real agreement is reached.

The lives of many in poorer countries and future generations depend on this and us.