2012 Eco-Justice Workshops
We are living in an age when human health and Creation itself are under threat. It is often God’s Creation and vulnerable populations such as people living in poverty, that face the most devastating impacts of environmental degradation. The Eco-Justice workshops will focus special attention on the links between environmental degradation and economic justice. Workshop topics include energy ethics and local livelihoods, Creation’s place in the federal budget, environmental health in low-income communities, and the choices we can make as people of faith to ensure a world fit for the seventh generation.
Workshops Coordinator: Chloe Schwabe, Environmental Health Program Manager, National Council of Churches
Session I – Saturday, March 24, 11:00 am – 12:30 pm
A Sacred Conversation on Faith, Materialism, and Ecology
In the 21st century, as the 7+ billion human inhabitants consume more than the earth can replace, are there truths arising from our faith understandings that can form the basis for how we should respond to this issue? As Americans, do we have a “right” to consume at levels that far exceed everyone else? As we consume all of these material goods are we trying to fill a hole in our soul with stuff? Come join in a Sacred Conversation on Faith & Materialism which will explore this topic both from a Global and a personal perspective.
Facilitator: Rev. Terry Gallager, Sacred Conversations in Justice
Environmental Health and Economic Justice
We live in a chemical world. Chemicals are used in everyday modern conveniences such as furniture, personal care products, cookware, and food. Yet from production to disposal, these chemicals harm the health and livelihoods of low-income people, particularly low-income people of color, and children. Learn about some of these chemicals of concern, why these populations are most vulnerable, and how you can be an agent of change to put the health of God’s people over corporate profits.
Speaker: Shantha Ready Alonso, National Council of Churches and Michele Roberts of Advocates for Environmental Human Rights
Session II – Saturday, March 25, 2:15 – 3:45 pm
Energy Justice and Local Livelihoods: The Moral implications of Mountaintop Removal and Fracking
We are all dependent on energy for our homes, houses of worship, and transportation. Yet the price of this energy is high for local communities who are displaced, fall sick, or that are left with polluted lands. The panelists will explain how these two extractive industries operate and harm human communities and livelihoods and God’s Creation.
Panelists: Reverend Robin Blakeman, Environmental Ministry Action Network of WV Presbytery and Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition;
Lorelei Scarbro, advocate and widow of coalminer in West Virginia; Mary Minette, Director of Environmental Education and Advocacy for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Amerca
Session III – Sunday, March 25, 11:00 am— 12:30 pm
Cleanliness is Godliness?: An Investigation into the Dangers of Cosmetics/Cleaning Supplies
Come on a journey through your medicine cabinet and cleaning supply bin. Find out what toxic hazards may lie in your products, and about their disproportionate impacts on women. Learn some tried and true safer personal care and cleaning alternatives for your family, and mix up some home-made products yourself. Advocate for government reform of toxic
chemical safety testing and regulation.
Facilitated by Chloe Schwabe, National Council of Churches
Ethical Stewardship of God’s Creation in the Federal Budget
Recent national budgetdebates have threatened programs in placethat protect Creation. But are there other programs in place that harm God’s Creation? is there an ethical way to cut the budget and be better stewards of Creation and taxpayer dollars? What role can we play as people of faith to protect God’s Creation in the budget process?
Speakers include Autumn Hanna, Taxpayers for Common Sense; Benjamin Schreiber, Friends of the Earth; and Jordan Blevins, Church of the Brethren and National Council of Churches