Canadian Christians Launch Collective for Climate Action

Tearfund and A Rocha see the impact in humanitarian crises now and want to organize churches to help.

When Matthew thinks about the drought in Ethiopia—the worst in 50 years—he thinks of the starving animals and malnourished people.

When he thinks about the solution, he thinks of the need to address climate change.

“It’s not a one-off thing. It’s not a glitch,” the director of Tearfund Canada told CT.

The Christian relief organization has provided assistance through food programs established to help herdsmen who have been forced to migrate to cities as their livelihoods dissolve. But Schroeder feels compelled to do something more than help those suffering now. He wants to mitigate future droughts by addressing the problem of climate change.

The substantial increase in atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gases—including carbon dioxide, methane, chlorofluorocarbons, and nitrous oxide—caused by burning fossil fuels doesn’t have an outsized impact on the lives of Canadians where Schroeder lives in Toronto. But 7,500 miles away, in Eastern and Northern Africa, the human cost of climate change is very visible.

“We see the effects firsthand,” Schroeder said. “For us, if things get too hot, we’ll just crank up the air conditioning a bit more. But for our beneficiaries in Kenya, Ethiopia, Tanzania, and South Sudan, it really is a matter of life and death.”

That’s why Tearfund has taken steps recently to partner with another Christian organization, A Rocha Canada, to better educate people in Canada about the effects of climate change and what they can do to help.

To kick off this partnership, they conducted a survey of 742 Canadian Christians between the ages of 18 and 40 to learn more about what they currently think concerning climate change and …

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