- Pope Francis has called for an end to the use of fossil fuels.
- He also called for debt forgiveness for developing countries.
- Pope Francis was unable to attend the Dubai summit in person.
In a speech given here at COP28, the Pope backed calls for an end to fossil fuel use.
In an extensive speech, Pope Francis demanded that, in order to rescue the environment, we stop using coal, oil, and gas, and change our way of life.
He also requested debt forgiveness for the less developed nations affected by climate change.
Due to sickness, the pope was unable to attend the Dubai summit in person; instead, Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Parolin read the pope’s remarks.
Pope Francis, who has always been interested in climate issues, was poised to create history by giving the first-ever speech to the Conference of the Parties, or COP, as it is commonly known.
However, because he is still recuperating from the illness and lung inflammation, the 86-year-old head of the Catholic Church was obliged to postpone his trip.
In his stead, Cardinal Pietro Parolin made a forceful speech outlining the effects of climate change on the world and the steps that world leaders needed to take to address the problem.
The main takeaway was that significant political change is required in response to climate change.
“COP28 must be a turning point,” the pope declared.
Adopting renewable energy, “the elimination of fossil fuels, and education in lifestyles that are less dependant” are possible ways to accomplish the ecological shift needed to rescue the planet.
At this meeting, there has been growing political pressure for a clear statement about the future use of gas, oil, and coal—the primary sources of the warming gases that are endangering our world.
Sultan Al-Jaber, the president of COP28, has stated that the phase-out of these fuels is “inevitable,” despite the fact that his oil business has significantly increased production.
In his speech, the Pope criticized attempts to place the responsibility for the ecological and climate challenges on high birth rates and the impoverished.
Additionally, he called out the nations who release the most carbon dioxide since they “were responsible for a deeply troubling ecological debt”.
He stated that it would only be just if these nations paid off the financial obligations of developing countries due to their excessive reliance on fossil fuels.
“The Pope’s message is very well timed as we move into discussions on a global stocktake at COP28,” said Neil Thorns from Catholic international development charity, Cafod.
“These discussions must be a time for leaders to heed his call: not for a partial change, but a new way of making progress together, and for choosing a culture of life over a culture of death.”
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