Media Releases

Faith groups to examine climate change as a moral issue

April 12, 2010

TORONTO, ON – How is cli­mate change a moral issue? What can peo­ple of faith do to be part of the solu­tion?

At a two-day retreat start­ing on Fri­day, April 16, 2010, lead­ers from dif­fer­ent faith tra­di­tions will meet with envi­ron­men­tal and inter­na­tion­al devel­op­ment com­mu­ni­ties in Toron­to to dis­cuss these key ques­tions and ini­ti­ate plan­ning to tack­le cli­mate change. Media are invit­ed to attend all or part of the two-day ses­sions, which will run at the nation­al offices of the Unit­ed Church of Cana­da at 3250 Bloor St. West, Suite 300.

The retreat, orga­nized by the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to, the Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­gary and the Pem­bi­na Insti­tute, is meant to spark dia­logue between dif­fer­ent reli­gious groups with the goal of cre­at­ing a coop­er­a­tive, faith-backed strat­e­gy on cli­mate change.

“It is crit­i­cal that we adopt a new eco­log­i­cal eth­ic, informed by our faith tra­di­tions, that prompts us to live in ways that are mutu­al­ly enhanc­ing for us and the rest of cre­ation,” says Den­nis O’Hara from the Uni­ver­si­ty of St. Michael’s Col­lege at UofT.

Ses­sions on Fri­day, April 16 will focus on under­stand­ing cli­mate change through a faith-based lens. Some of the cov­ered top­ics will include:

-          Cli­mate change, glob­al cli­mate jus­tice and the impact on the world’s poor

-          Cli­mate change and envi­ron­men­tal decline as moral issues

On Sat­ur­day, April 17, ses­sions will focus on what faith groups can active­ly do to com­bat cli­mate change and spark action with­in their com­mu­ni­ties. Some of the cov­ered top­ics will include:

-          Effec­tive engage­ment with mul­ti-faith com­mu­ni­ties

-          The Abo­li­tion of Slav­ery move­ment in Eng­land and the Civ­il Rights Move­ment: a mod­el for the cre­ation care and cli­mate jus­tice move­ment

A full sched­ule of events and speak­ers is avail­able here:

To reg­is­ter for all or part of the retreat, please con­tact Lau­ryn Drainie at 416–593-0906 or


For more infor­ma­tion, please con­tact:

Den­nis Patrick O’Hara
Uni­ver­si­ty of St. Michael’s Col­lege, Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to
416–926-1300, ext. 3408