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Kammen and Other Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA) Offer to the Vatican

ECPA Senior Fel­low Con­tributes to Pope Francis’s Encyclical

Thursday, June 18, Pope Fran­cis released his long-​​awaited encycli­cal on the envi­ron­ment, a ground­break­ing let­ter declar­ing cli­mate change one of humanity’s great­est chal­lenges. Dr. Dan Kam­men, a 2007 Nobel Peace Prize win­ner who also serves as a Senior Fel­low to the Energy and Cli­mate Part­ner­ship of the Amer­i­cas (ECPA) ini­tia­tive, launched by Pres­i­dent Obama and admin­is­tered by Part­ners of the Amer­i­cas, was a con­trib­u­tor to the report and attended the Vat­i­can draft­ing meetings.

“The Pope’s sup­port in the fight against cli­mate change is poten­tially life-​​saving for mil­lions of at-​​risk peo­ple in impov­er­ished com­mu­ni­ties all over the world,” said Dr. Kammen.

In a response let­ter to Pope Francis’s encycli­cal, Senior ECPA Fel­lows Dr. Dan Kam­men, Jigar Shah, Dave Williams, and Dr. Suresh Garimella pro­pose part­ner­ing with the Vat­i­can to iden­tify sites, churches, financ­ing struc­tures, and tech­nol­ogy that can become a model of renew­able energy across the West­ern Hemi­sphere before 2020. Cli­mate change has hit the Amer­i­cas hard – five out of the ten coun­tries most affected by cli­mate change are in Latin Amer­ica and the Caribbean, and the region may see some of the hottest ris­ing tem­per­a­tures in the years to come

The Senior Fel­lows’ pro­fes­sional exper­tise in clean energy tech­nol­ogy would advance the goals of Pope Fran­cis and allow them to reach more vul­ner­a­ble com­mu­ni­ties in Latin Amer­ica and the Caribbean. The Senior Fel­lows wrote to the Pope in their capac­ity as pri­vate indi­vid­u­als and not on behalf of ECPA or the U.S. Government.

In the 184-​​page let­ter, Pope Fran­cis lays out the envi­ron­men­tal, social, eco­nomic and polit­i­cal con­se­quences of cli­mate change – con­se­quences that are dis­pro­por­tion­ately felt by the world’s poor­est peo­ple. The con­tent of the Pope’s encycli­cal may be envi­ron­men­tally game-​​changing – it illus­trates a com­mon goal between faith and sci­ence, one that has the abil­ity to move reli­gious com­mu­ni­ties to take action. When com­bined, Pope Francis’s lead­er­ship and the ECPA Senior Fel­lows’ exper­tise could make a pow­er­ful part­ner­ship in secur­ing an envi­ron­men­tally clean and sus­tain­able future for the Americas.

Part­ners of the Amer­i­cas is an inter­na­tional net­work that pro­motes social and eco­nomic devel­op­ment in the Amer­i­cas through lead­er­ship, vol­un­tary ser­vice, and devel­op­ment pro­grams. Its mis­sion is to con­nect indi­vid­u­als, vol­un­teers, insti­tu­tions, busi­nesses, and com­mu­ni­ties to serve and to change lives through last­ing part­ner­ships. Part­ners envi­sions an inter­con­nected hemi­sphere that max­i­mizes the social and eco­nomic poten­tial, and lever­ages the full diver­sity, of the Amer­i­cas. For more infor­ma­tion, visit www​.Part​ners​.net.

This article was originally posted on the Renewable & Appropriate Energy Laboratory (RAEL).