ROME (CNS) – Dozens of leaders from major faiths in the UK have urged government leaders to take urgent action to tackle climate change and have pledged their congregations will do the same.

The so-called Glasgow Multi-Faith Declaration was signed and released on September 20, ahead of the United Nations Climate Change Conference, known as COP26, to be held in Glasgow, Scotland in early November. The Scottish Catholic Media Office released a copy of the statement on September 22.

Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, Jain and Zoroastrian leaders as well as Catholics, Anglicans, Methodists and members of other Protestant communities signed the declaration. Catholic leaders included Scottish Bishop Brian McGee of Argyll and the Isles, chairman of the Catholic Bishops Committee for Interfaith Dialogue, and Our Lady Sister Isabel Smyth, committee secretary, and Bishop John Arnold of Salford, bishop principal for the environment for the Catholic Church in England and Wales.

“Our religious communities are united in caring for human life and the natural world, the leaders said. “We share a belief in a hopeful future, as well as an obligation to be responsible in taking care of our common home, Earth.”

“We recognize the opportunities that COP26 offers to respond to the urgent need to act to limit the effects of climate change and the critical importance of the decisions taken at this conference to advance the agreement reached in Paris in 2015,” said he declared.

“People have exploited the planet, causing climate change,” they said. “We recognize that the burden of loss and damage weighs most heavily on people living in poverty, especially women and children. “

The leaders promised to respond by:

– “Reflect deeply in prayer, meditation and worship to discern how to care for the earth and one another and encourage our respective communities to do the same.

– “Bring transformational change in our own lives and in the lives of our communities through individual and collective action.

– “To be defenders of justice by calling on governments, businesses and others wielding their power and influence to implement the Paris Agreement.

– “Make the transition to a fair and green economy a priority.

– “Commit to scientific objectives aligned with a healthy, resilient and zero-emission future. “

Religious leaders called on governments to “take the urgent steps necessary to avoid loss, damage and forced migration threatened by climate change” and to work together and with others to create a positive vision for 2050.

“Through our doctrinal and political differences, we know that we must change the way we ensure a quality of life that all can share, and we must give hope to people of all ages, everywhere, including future generations. “, did he declare.

“To bring hope to the world,” said the leaders, “we must have confidence that those in power understand the vital role they must play at COP26 in Glasgow.”