President of the National Council of Churches in Australia
It is our role to take care of the Earth, to take care of the Planet – God’s creation. It is our responsibility to cherish it, to look after it and to pass it on to other generations."
Bishop Philip Huggins is President of the National Council of Churches in Australia, an organisation that has incorporated environmental care into its mandate for a long time.
"The role of faith leaders internationally is to raise the ambitions of our political leaders. 84% of the world population have a religious belief. Just as faith leaders played a crucial role in building momentum for the UN COP21 negotiations for the Paris Agreement, so we must make a similar contribution now as we approach the global COP26 climate negotiations in Glasgow this November."
Philip believes responding to climate change is a matter of applying the solutions that already exist and the work that's already being done to transition Australia to a renewable economy.
"The private sector is making major investments, as are State and Local Governments. More and more individuals are pursuing zero emissions lifestyles. The missing link is a coherent national strategy."
Philip believes Australia’s role in responding to climate change should include supporting those disproportionately impacted, particularly our Pacific neighbours, in a way that enables them to develop clean energy economies.
“Australia can facilitate a transition that delivers prosperity in a safer environment and allows us to be generous to our neighbours. We can become the renewable powerhouse of the Asia Pacific region, and that is a thrilling possibility. We have an opportunity to thrive from the bounty of nature’s provenance - the sun and the wind - in a new way, coupled with the expertise of so many who are already doing this. We just have to overcome the resistance that has prevented us doing this to date."