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Embracing Faith Through Advocacy: 5 Ways to Protect the Environment

By Maria Bohan, Interim Communications Manager

This week’s “Embracing Faith” article will focus on Embracing Faith through Advocacy.

Embracing Faith Through Ministry

“But ask the beasts, and they will teach you; the birds of the heavens, and they will tell you; or the bushes of the earth, and they will teach you; and the fish of the sea will declare to you. Who among all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In his hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.”

-Job 12:7-10

On the news each day, we see floods, fires, and famines. It is as if we are living in biblical times. But 97% of scientists agree that we are instead feeling the effects of climate change. [1]

Climate change is thought to be caused by the increased quantity of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere. These gases cause heat to be trapped near Earth’s surface, which in turn causes more extreme weather, sea-level rise, and loss of habitat for animals as well as humans.

On Thursday, June 30, 2022, the United States Supreme Court issued a ruling that could restrict the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ability to regulate carbon emissions.

While it is not yet clear to what extent this decision will impact the fight against climate change, it “was a particularly bad omen for environmentalists. In a very real sense, it seemed to reject any holistic regulatory attempt to deal with climate change.” [2]

The Sisters of St. Dominic of Blauvelt, NY have been supporting environmental causes for years. In 2020, the Blauvelt Dominicans, along with other US congregations of Dominican Sisters, committed $46,650,000 to a strategic investment initiative in collaboration with Morgan Stanley to address climate change, especially as it affects marginalized communities disproportionately impacted by global warming. [3]

Additionally, at Harmony Farm in Goshen, NY, our sisters have been working to shorten the distance between people and the food they eat by providing fresh vegetables to the surrounding community. Some food is donated to local soup kitchens, while other produce is purchased by members of the farm’s CSA.

As we wait for the impacts of the Supreme Court’s ruling to become clearer, here are five ways you can act to protect our environment.

1. Aim to reduce your plastic consumption.

2. Buy local goods and produce to decrease the amount of fossil fuel emissions necessary for these products to reach you. Or, consider starting your own garden!

3. Contact your local and state politicians and federal agencies to let them know that protecting the environment is important and necessary.

4. Buy second-hand goods when possible and repurpose objects that would otherwise end up in a landfill.

5. Participate in local environmental clean-up events.


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