The Parliament of the World’s Religions Climate Action Task Force is proud to announce the recent acceptance of the PoWR to the network of Civil Society Organizations affiliated to the United Nations Environment Program.
In this role, the PoWR gains observer status to UN Environment Assembly and its subsidiary bodies.
UN Environment is headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, and works to “provide leadership and encourage partnership in caring for the environment by inspiring, informing, and enabling nations and peoples to improve their quality of life without compromising that of future generations.”
Its key foci includes climate change, disasters and conflicts, ecosystem management, environmental governance, chemicals and waste, resource efficiency, and environment under review. UNEP also takes on a special interest in leveraging the contributions of faith-based organizations to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals through its Faith for Earth Initiative.
“This new opportunity for PoWR to advocate for climate action with UN Environment comes at a time when the role of faith-based actors in confronting climate change is receiving heightened attention. Our status as an accredited organization will allow us to engage at the international level and amplify a crucial message of faith communities around the world: it is our moral obligation to protect creation and commit to a low carbon world. The interfaith movement, as a vital catalyst for sustainability, must undertake the work of questioning and informing the next steps in humanity’s task of maintaining global temperatures at 1.5 degrees Celsius in order to avoid the most catastrophic effects of climate change. Our partnership with UN Environment is important in accomplishing that,” said Joshua Basofin, PoWR’s Director of Climate Action.
Major groups and stakeholders accredited by the UNEP are able to participate in policy dialogue through regional and annual global assemblies, review and contribute to unedited working documents and statements, as well as submit written contributions. During assemblies, such CSOs are also able to attend plenaries, interact with key governmental authorities, make oral statements and circulate written statements.
UNEP representatives were able to witness the commitment of the Parliament of the World’s Religions to climate action first-hand as participants and presenters in the international convening in Toronto in November 2018. Dr. Iyad Abu Moghli, Principal Advisor of the Faith for Earth Initiative of UN Environment was a featured keynote and most recently addressed the Parliament’s network of faith-based climate actors in a virtual workshop in January, 2019.
The Climate Action Task Force of the Parliament of the World’s Religions looks forward to learning, growing, and advancing through the UNEP Assembly in 2019, as well as through its networks as a co-founding organization of the Interfaith Rainforest Initiative and member of the We’re Still In coalition.