“Unfortunately I cannot be with you, as I would have liked, but I am with you because the time is urgent. I am with you because, now more than ever, everyone’s future depends on the present we choose. I am with you because the devastation of created is an offense against God, a sin that is not only personal but structural which affects human beings, especially the weakest, a serious danger that looms over everyone and which risks triggering conflict between generations”. Thus the Pope in his COP28 speech on climate change, read at the Expo City in Dubai by Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin.
“It is clear that the climate changes underway derive from global warming, mainly caused by the increase in greenhouse gases
in the atmosphere, caused in turn by human activity, which in recent decades has become unsustainable for the ecosystem”, said the Pope, according to whom “the ambition to produce and possess has turned into obsession and has resulted in limitless greed, which has made the environment the object of unbridled exploitation. The crazy climate sounds like a warning to stop this delirium of omnipotence. Let us return to recognizing our limitations with humility and courage as the only way to live fully.”
“What hinders this path? – asks the pontiff – The divisions that exist between us. But a completely connected world, like today’s, cannot be disconnected in terms of who governs it, with international negotiations unable to advance significantly due to the positions of countries that favor their own national interests over the global common good. According to the Pope, “we are witnessing rigid if not inflexible positions, which tend to protect their own revenues and that of their companies, sometimes justifying themselves on the basis of what has been done by others in the past, with periodic rebounds of responsibility. But the task to which we are called today is not towards yesterday, but towards tomorrow; of a tomorrow that, like it or not, will either be everyone’s or it won’t be.”
“How much energy is humanity wasting in the many ongoing wars, such as in Israel and Palestine, in Ukraine and in many regions of the world: conflicts
which will not solve the problems, but will increase them! How many resources were wasted on armaments, which destroy lives and ruin the common home!”, he added, before relaunching his proposal: “‘with the money used on weapons and other military expenses we establish a global fund for
finally eliminate hunger and carry out activities that promote the sustainable development of the poorest countries, combating climate change”.
“A change of pace is essential which is not a partial modification of the route, but a new way of proceeding together”, he added, underlining that “if on the path to fighting climate change, which opened in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, the Paris Agreement marked ‘a new beginning’, we must now relaunch the journey. We must give a concrete sign of hope.” “May this COP be a turning point – is the pontiff’s appeal -: let it demonstrate a clear and tangible political will, which leads to a decisive acceleration of the ecological transition, through forms that
have three characteristics: they are ‘efficient, binding and easily monitored’). And they find realization in four fields: energy efficiency; renewable sources; the elimination of fossil fuels; education for lifestyles less dependent on the latter”.
“Please: let’s move forward, let’s not go back”, Francis invokes: “Here it is a question of no longer postponing, of implementing, not just hoping for, the good
of your children, of your citizens, of your countries, of our world (…) History will be grateful to you.” “2024 marks the turning point – he concludes: “let’s leave divisions behind and join forces! And, with God’s help, we emerge from the night of wars and environmental devastation to transform
the common future in a dawn of light”.
Video Cop28, Pope Francis: ‘Yes’ to efficient, mandatory and monitorable measures’
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