Baltimore Yearly Meeting
Minute on Global Warming (approved August 2000)
Baltimore Yearly Meeting website: http://www.bym-rsf.org/
Protecting God’s Earth and its fullness of life is of fundamental religious concern to the Society of Friends. The links between human activity, the dramatic rise in atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations, and the rise of average global temperature are now of sufficient concern to lead us to action. Climate change is apt to affect everyone and everything: food, water, air quality, biodiversity, forests, public health, social order and world peace. It is therefore an issue of great importance for ecological sustainability, social and economic justice, and international diplomacy.
Because the United States uses much more energy per capita than any other nation, our policies to curtail greenhouse gas emissions will be crucial. We must consider not only the kind of fuels used directly but also the energy embodied in all material goods we use. Our nation has long set a standard for others with its high levels of consumption; we must now provide an example by taking responsibility for the consequences of past and current behavior.
Involvement by religious communities in education and advocacy will be needed if policies to address global warming are to succeed in politics or in practice in the U.S.We unite in urging individual Friends, monthly meetings, and other Friends Organizations to seek Divine Guidance in understanding how to:
- reduce our own use of energy and material resources;
- support strong international agreements for reducing greenhouse gas emissions;
- promote national policies for assuring energy and resource conservation
- participate in a transition to less damaging technologies in our industries, agriculture, buildings and transportation.
- These are essential steps to protect life on Earth as God creates and sustains it.
Minute on Population (approved 1994)
We recognize rapid population growth to be an important human and environmental problem.
While causes and solutions are complex, we endorse the concept of family planning and efforts to make family planning, education, and services widely available. We feel a special concern for the status of women. We acknowledge disunity among Friends on abortion. We are united in opposing coercion in family planning programs. We urge Meetings to study further the problem of rapid population growth and discern how we are to act on this concern as individuals and Meetings.
- Are we aware of the interconnection of population concerns and such Quaker testimonies as right sharing, simplicity, peace, and equality?
- Do we fulfill our responsibility to be good stewards of God’s creation?
- Are we filled with God’s love for all life?