Pope Promotes Clean Energy

Last week Pope Benedict XVI offered more evidence of his greenish sensibilities, calling for more research and development of clean energy options for the future. During introductory remarks made at a June 9 presentation of credentials from new ambassadors to the Vatican, Pope Benedict commented on the "innumerable tragedies that have affected nature, technology, and the peoples" this year in an apparent reference to events like the Japan earthquake/tsunami and resulting nuclear crisis as well as the violent storms across the United States that previously drew his attention. He said, "The states should reflect together on the short term future of the planet, on our responsibilities regarding our life and technology."

"Human ecology," Benedict said, "is an imperative. Adopting a lifestyle that respects our environment and supports the research and use of clean energies that preserve the patrimony of creation and that are safe for human beings should be given political and economic priority".

Advertisement

He added that "a change in mentality" is necessary in order to "quickly arrive at a global lifestyle that respects the covenant between humanity and nature, without which the human family risks disappearing. ... Every government must commit themselves to protecting nature and assisting it to carry out its essential role in the survival of humanity. The United Nations seem to be the natural framework for this type of reflection, which should not be obscured by blindly partisan political or economic interests in order to give preference to solidarity over particular interests."

While suggesting that humankind's creative faculties could be a way out of the problems posed by fossil fuel consumption, Benedict took the opportunity to reminds us that man does not live by his advanced technology alone. "It is also helpful to ask ourselves," he said, "about the appropriate role of technology" because "believing it is the exclusive agent of progress or happiness carries a reification of humanity that leads to blindness and misery.... Technology that dominates human beings deprives them of their humanity. The pride that it generates has created an impossible economism in our societies as well as a hedonism that subjectively and selfishly regulates behavior. The debilitation of the primacy of the human person provokes a loss of the meaning of life."

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.
6 years 6 months ago
This was written this week by Bjorn Lomborg who is an optimist and a believer that technology will solve our problems.


http://www.newsweek.com/2011/06/12/bjorn-lomborg-explains-how-to-save-the-planet.print.html


There are probably a lot of more terrifying bogey men in our future then climate change but whatever they are will have to be dealt with just as pollution has to be dealt with.  For a simple one, look at the post about cell phones and how everyone has their head staring into their hands these days.  I just watched a 2 1/2 year old not pay any attention to his newborn baby brother because he had his head buried into an IPad.  


Before anyone says anything about toddler's typical reactions to their newborn siblings, I was more focused on the prevalence of this particular behavior that has arisen in the last couple years and is ubiquitous.  And by the way the 2 1/2 year old is precocious and has is starting to learn to read with the help of the IPad.  Technology is a two edged sword just as energy has released us from a primitive life, it is now threatening our lives.

Advertisement

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

A reflection for the second Friday of Advent
Elizabeth Kirkland CahillDecember 15, 2017
Father James Martin, S.J. and Ross Douthat at the Civility in America Part 1: Religion event held at The Sheen Center on Dec. 13th. (America/Antonio DeLoera-Brust).
Is there a duty for Christians to represent a certain kind of voice in the public discourse?
Angelo Jesus CantaDecember 14, 2017
A spokesman for the archdiocese described the meeting as “personal” in nature and aimed at “renewing a friendship that goes back 15 years or so.”
Michael J. O’LoughlinDecember 14, 2017
Black women cannot be expected to continue to save white people from the poor choices they make.
Anthea ButlerDecember 14, 2017