Pope Issues Rare Encyclical On Climate Change That Demands Action To Curtail Carbon Emissions To Save Humanity

120px-Pope_Francis_in_March_2013_(cropped)earth-screensaver_largeAs widely rumored, Pope Francis has issued a historic papal encyclical that agrees with the vast majority of scientists that global warming is real, largely caused by mankind, and threatens the very future of humanity. He has called for emergency action to curtail carbon emissions by reducing fossil fuels and developing renewables.

220px-AlfedPalmersmokestacksThe Pope denounced the massive levels of pollution that are making the Earth into “an immense pile of filth”. He criticized deniers and said that “doomsday predictions can no longer be met with irony or disdain.” He acknowledged other contributors to global warming but insisted: ““It is true that there are other factors (such as volcanic activity, variations in the earth’s orbit and axis, the solar cycle), yet a number of scientific studies indicate that most global warming in recent decades is due to the great concentration of greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane, nitrogen oxides and others) released mainly as a result of human activity.”

The papal encyclical sent to 5,000 Catholic bishops worldwide seeks to mobilize the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics and is viewed as one of the significant new voices for action both in terms of its political and religious impact.

He stated “A number of scientific studies indicate that most global warming in recent decades is due to the great concentration of greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane, nitrogen oxides and others) released mainly as a result of human activity.” He insisted that without extreme measures “this century may well witness extraordinary climate change and an unprecedented destruction of ecosystems, with serious consequences for all of us.” To achieve such emergency measures, he called for drastic reductions in fossil fuels and the rapid development of renewable energy sources.

He further suggested that special interests and greed are driving the campaign against recognition of the problem and measures needed to address it.

It will be interesting how the papal announcement changes the political landscape, particularly with conservative Catholics and other Christians. The Obama Administration has been in the forefront of seeking global action, a position that I agree with (even though I do not agree with some of its unilateral actions). The Administration will have to convince skeptics in Congress and this Papal encyclical will certainly help, though I doubt it will dramatically change the political position in Congress.

134 thoughts on “Pope Issues Rare Encyclical On Climate Change That Demands Action To Curtail Carbon Emissions To Save Humanity”

  1. The long-term foolishness of this Pope’s recent decision is illustrated by the two paths now facing society:

    Path # 1. Society will continue the post-WWII path to avoid the reality that humans live exactly 1 AU (one astronomical unit) from a pulsar that made our chemical elements, birthed the solar system five billion years (5 Ga) ago, sustained the origin and evolution of life on Earth after ~3.8 Ga ago, and maintains dominant control over every atom, life and planet in the solar system today. Society is now on path #1, a return path to the Dark Ages.

    Path # 2. Society will merge scientific and spiritual insights into a Higher Level of Evolution, as Nobel Laureate Max Planck explained the matter that orbits the Sun’s pulsar core in his 1944 speech in Florence, Italy:

    “As a man who has devoted his whole life to the most clear-headed science, to the study of matter, I can tell you as a result of my research about the atoms this much: There is no matter as such! All matter originates and exists only by virtue of a force which brings the particles of an atom to vibration and holds this most minute solar system of the atom together . . . We must assume behind this force the existence of a conscious and intelligent Mind. This Mind is the matrix of all matter.”


  2. Aptly named personanongrata…with statements like that, it leads me to surmise that “if stupidity were a virtue, he would be a saint”…

  3. Pope Issues Rare Encyclical On Climate Change That Demands Action To Curtail Carbon Emissions To Save Humanity

    The Catholic Church has always been a stalwart defender of prevailing scientific consensus when ever it has suited it’s needs just ask Galileo Galilei.

    … to abandon completely… the opinion that the sun stands still at the center of the world and the earth moves, and henceforth not to hold, teach, or defend it in any way whatever, either orally or in writing. —The Inquisition’s injunction against Galileo, 1616.[59]


    Relying upon the Catholic Church to help advance scientific notions of consensus in regard to human driven climate change is an act of desperation on part of the global warming con-artists.

  4. What a sad, sad state of affairs for all Earth’s inhabitants that FEAR of

    1. Not being the center of the universe in 1543, and
    2. Nuclear annihilation in Aug-Sept 1945

    robbed humanity of the ability to appreciate the beautiful, bountiful, benevolent universe that sustains our lives and allows humans to live in conscious awareness of their surroundings.

    I am gaining even deeper respect for my research mentor, the late Professor Paul Kazuo Kuroda (1917-2001) who risked his life by secretly possessing the design of Japan’s atomic bomb for fifty-seven years to make certain future generations would have reliable information on the fountain of energy that sustains our lives:

    “Solar Energy,” Adv. Astron. (submitted 1 Sept 2104; published privately 17 Mar 2015)

  5. Padparadscha … I am quite sure Pope Francis knows nothing of me, and am equally sure that is as it should be. I merely have an opinion. Part of that is a strong dislike for the mixing of politics and religion. My viewpoint is driven by direct observation of instances where politics became “religion” of sorts, with severe penalty if you did not agree. I admit that may overly influence my opinions these days. If I am misinterpreting his words, that is on me, not Pope Francis. I am but one among 6+ billion on this earth and that’s fairly insignificant I’d say. Over time my opinion is subject to change.

  6. no problem aridog…I’m sure Pope Francis ignores your scintillating post’s as well…and all those profound, erudite encyclicals you’ve written…

  7. Padparascha … I am not “mocking” the Pope, I am ignoring him anytime he conflates politics with religion. He is hardly the first environmentalist among us, while he could have praised those who work for a cleaner world, he chose otherwise. Thus, I ignore him.

  8. On matters of faith and morals, the Catholic Church’s teachings are “perfect”…infallible…all Churches are false and man-made…save one…”A roads lead to Rome”…the seat of Christendom…the Church of England and it’s many bogus branches are all false and heretical…as is are “all varieties” of protestantism…read the “Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma” by Dr. Ludwig Ott…

  9. The Pontiff is not professing to be either an authority on “engineering or chemistry”…his concern for mankind is genuine and he wishes to convey his global concern through his encyclical. Many people choose to mock him, as they claim he is not a “true” scientist…many of these same detractors mock him, because they don’t approve of his stance on abortion, birth control or gay rights, or theology…he won’t satisfy any of these people, as most of these detractors despise the Catholic Church and it’s teachings…according to many on this blog, the Pope should not speak on religion, the environment and certainly not the morality of humankind…yet the majority of Christendom loves and embraces him…those who despise him would despise any man who sits in Peter’s chair…

    1. Funny how the comments made by various Islamic mullahs and imams, the world over, declaring death to America, death to infidels, etc., pass without any reaction, acknowledgement or condemnation from the rest of humanity. Let the Pope, however, send out a message–one which is based upon love and concern for the planet, one which contains no hateful speech, one which implores us to be better stewards of this earth–and all hell breaks loose. Save some of your ire and disrespectful diatribes for those who support, in no uncertain terms, death and destruction on a daily basis. How ironic that the truly offensive and destructive comments are met with silence.

  10. John Smith said …

    I”d wager all those who say he should stay away from science have less scientific credentials and experience than he does…Religion has always informed politics since the Pharaoh claimed he was anointed by the gods.The social doctrine of the Church opposes capitalism in favor of justice.

    I’d amend that part about opposing capitalism, to one degree or another, to limit it to mostly the Jesuit orders. As for the citation of the Pharaohs…you made my point very nicely about politics and religion being poor bedfellows. Thanks.

    Finally, I am fairly confident that my background in chemistry and engineering is at least equal to that of the pontiff…which I remark upon only because you said “all those” when it is not quite all. I am not one who denies “climate change” in total, I just question the degree of anthropomorphism that is involved…not to mention the 3rd world peoples who, if forced to abide the new government “religion” would carry most of the burden of a sudden energy switch mandate. China in its populated urban areas has made great strides, but in the rural regions not so much. Those folks count too. It can be accomplished, of course, but with a bit more emphasis on the efficiency of the energy sources, which at present has the cart before the horse. Please let me know when you can afford a Tesla vehicle without a subsidy…at present I can’t, or at least won’t make the decision to go without other things, even with a subsidy. When it is capable of 400+ miles per charge I’ll reconsider if charging stations are plentiful….an unlikelihood in the wilderness areas I visit frequently. When you’ve seen rural natives of 3rd world countries scrounging for firewood just to heat water for a bath you might decide that modern clean coal technology is, at present, is the best we can do in those circumstances. Skipping exporting that technology is down right criminal IMO.

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