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UC Members join Gore’s Climate Project

Wendy Miller and Andrew Johnson. Photo by Bruce Johnson
Queensland Uniting Church Justice and International Mission Advocate Andrew Johnson and Wendy Miller, member of Oxley congregation, were among the 180 people from throughout Australia who participated in the Australian Conservation Foundation’s Al Gore Climate Project training event in Melbourne in September.

Mr Johnson said the purpose of the weekend was to train ‘ordinary Australians’ to deliver personalised, ‘Australianised’ versions of Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth slide show presentation to their communities and work places.

Reflecting on her experiences of the weekend Ms Miller said the science and evidence of climate change presented over the weekend was a stark reminder of the seriousness of climate change.

“Examining the recorded data of a wide series of contemporary catastrophic weather events and changing climatic conditions in every continent, their increased intensity and frequency, and their cumulative and global implications, highlighted for me the enormity of the problem facing humanity.”

“At times I was overwhelmed by the morally and ethically irresponsible way that we have treated the natural system to such an extent that we have thrown it out of balance.

“On the other hand I was buoyed by the commitment, resilience and persistence of a growing number of climate change professionals and ordinary citizens who are committing themselves to tackle the problem head on and drive the changes that need to be made in order to minimise the natural and social impacts.”

Mr Johnson agreed, adding that the weekend helped him to gain a much better understanding of the overall picture of climate change causes and effects, and provided an invaluable framework for thinking about the solutions.

Mr Johnson and Ms Miller are working on the development of the Synod’s Green Church program providing an education campaign on climate change for the Uniting Church in Queensland.

It will assist congregations, members and church organisations such as UnitingCare, the Schools’ Commission, and Finance and Property Services to undertake energy assessments and seek ways to minimise greenhouse gas emissions.

The program will offer climate change workshops, as well as workshops on actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and workshops on advocacy for social justice in climate change issues.

For more information about the Climate Project, visit http://www.acfonline.org.au.

Photo: Wendy Miller and Andrew Johnson. Photo by Bruce Johnson