Synod Update May 2023
Kia ora koutou katoa. Greetings to you from all members of the Climate Justice Working Group (CJWG).
Road Map for the Decade – Rekindle the Va of Papatuanuku
Rekindle (light up again) the Va (the relationship between humans and the earth) of Papatuanuku (earth). Our road map is to be flexible and will be responsive to, and encouraging engagement with events in Aotearoa affecting the people and the earth over the decade. We have identified two year themes for the decade that will be addressed in the following order:
2023 – 2024 Zero Waste
2025 – 2026 Climate migrants
2027 – 2028 Water
2029 – 2030 Energy/Transport
2031 – 2032 Poverty reduction / food creation and sharing
In focussing on the two year themes we note that for each theme the following areas (at least) need to be addressed: Education, Awareness, Action, Talanoa, Storytelling and Lobbying. We are mindful that Climate Justice issues might appear to be all about challenges. Our focus will be on bringing hope across Te Haahi as we address these important issues. If there are new climate events we also need to engage with these throughout the decade.
Climate Justice Additional dimension
Common elements when discussing Climate Change focus on Adaptation and Mitigation. For us, we claim an additional dimension, that of Justice that will be visible when addressing all themes on our road map.
2023-2024 Zero Waste theme
We are shaping our first year in learning about this theme using the seasons in the natural world. The seasons offer ripe potential for theological reflection, study resources, worship and first action steps. Significant environmental days can add focus. 5 June – World Environmental Day, 16 June World Refill Day (to avoid plastic pollution), Plastic Free July, Second hand September (buy second hand)
Resources will be identified in the Climate Justice articles that will be a regular feature of Touchstone as well as on the Climate Justice web page. We also want to hear from parishes what they are doing so we can share these stories around the motu. Attached to this update is a feedback form where you can share your activities and ideas with us.
We last published a Climate Justice calendar in 2020. This was very popular and we are pleased to advise that our Zero Waste sub committee chaired by Siniva Isaia will be producing a calendar for 2024 in several languages, in hard copy and digital.
Climate Induced Migration Policy
Dr Elisapesi Havea continues to work on this policy. The CJWG have just received an update on her work. The policy will be launched at Conference 2024 ahead of the new two year theme on Climate Migrants.
Standard agenda item for committees, boards
The Conference 2022 decision to approve the decade for Climate Justice indicated that every synod, rohe, parish, committee, etc of our church should include in their meeting agendas the Decade of Climate Justice vision. It’s part of our responsibility to raise awareness of the impact of climate change and our commitment to work for justice on behalf of communities that are badly affected by climate change. It is our hope that all synods and rohe will think about what they can do at a synod level. We welcome ideas and suggestions so that we all make this decade count for the climate. Please use the attached feedback form or contact any of the CJWG members shown below.