Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Reflection On Climate Change And The Role Of Religion

After a frantic year, knee deep in satisfying the demands for expertise to deliver technology from reverse osmosis to biomass to smart metering, I recently had a well deserved break. I was able to explore the wonders of the Spanish Asturias mountains whilst taking time out with some very dear friends – old and new.

I’m not one to dwell overly on religion, but the Spanish impress me with their wonderful family ethics, strong religious beliefs and amazing church constructions in seemingly impossible mountain passes. One of the members of our group has just taken a fascinating new career path. She will be working in the heart of Rome, spending time advising various churches on how they disseminate climate change education to their various congregations. A big responsibility, and clearly one of huge importance.

I’ve also recently completed an assignment in the climate change lobbying space. Again this gave me real insight into the development of policy and the impact and importance such discussions will have to the forthcoming Copenhagen conference.

En route back to the UK (by boat, I hasten to add), not having had the luxury of TV and internet in our remote mountain accommodation, we saw distressing pictures of the Philippines – further reminders that all is not well on our planet.

I was reminded of the Richard Dimbleby lecture given by HRH Prince of Wales on Climate Change and the interplay between technology, people & religion. If you haven’t seen it, it is worth downloading. The lecture underlines the fact that many influences will be required moving forward – religion being just one of them.

So it was a good pause for reflection on the different roles people are playing in coming to grips with the climate change challenges our population will face over the coming years.

As we all go about our busy lives – where money making and materialism is high on the agenda – I wonder whether we will see a deliberate shift away from the unrelenting demands of consumerism and the trappings of material wealth. Perhaps a reconnection to more simple things in life.

For me, the last week of long lunches, food and wine shared with cherished people, to a background of gently sounding bells around the necks of contentedly munching cows and glorious green mountains, was a welcome reconnection to what life should be like.

So, back to earth with a bump then … and for those of you who know me, I’m not about to sign up and become a monk just yet …

By Debby Lloyd
Managing Director, EcoSearch

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