Pope Francis visits Varginha, Brazil in 2013. Photo Credit: Agencia Brasil
By Jack Karsten, PISA Staff Assistant
In April, the Vatican announced that Pope Francis would deliver an encyclical during the summer about climate change and the moral responsibility of the world’s Catholics to care for the Earth. In response, 250 rabbis in the United States cosigned a letter that outlines the obligations of Jews towards protecting the planet. In addition, climate scientist Dr. Katherine Hayhoe has made inroads among evangelical Christians with a series of speeches delivered to churches. These developments precede the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris in December, making 2015 an extremely important year for global action on carbon mitigation. The effort to reduce humanity’s carbon footprint will see greater success if religious and secular leaders share a unified message.
By Mary Howard, PISA Staff Assistant
On April 22, 2015, six outstanding individuals were honored for their work in grassroots environmental activism through The Goldman Environmental Prize. The prestigious award is given to one individual from each continental region. This year’s Asia recipient, Mr. Myint Zaw, was recognized for launching Myanmar’s national movement against construction of the Myitsone Dam on the Irrawaddy River. Myint Zaw, an environmental journalist and activist, was raised in the Irawaddy River delta which inspired his passion for nature and preservation. The Goldman Prize provides international recognition and credibility, global visibility and financial support of $175,000 for the awardee’s environmental pursuits. Mr. Steve Nichols, President and Founder of the Chino Cinega Foundation, a key supporter of Myint Zaw’s nomination, agreed to stop by PISA’s office to discuss the Foundation’s support for Myint Zaw’s important advocacy work.