For the benefit of all beings the Australian Buddhist community urges world leaders meeting in Paris this year to reduce the mining and use of coal and other fossil fuels. Instead of increased coal production we encourage the Australian government to actively pursue the development of renewable energy technologies and help developing countries toward the same end. In the face of overwhelming scientific consensus, urgent action is needed to avoid the catastrophic damage to the earth that climate change will bring if not halted.
Coal is the dirtiest fossil fuel. Besides contributing to carbon dioxide production it causes enormous damage to human health and local ecosystems. The leadership of every nation of the world is needed now more than ever to help transition the world from coal power to renewable clean energy.
The Federation of Australian Buddhist Councils encourages practical changes at the personal, national and global levels to tackle climate change. Personal awareness and action is encouraged to reduce one’s personal contribution to climate change, while government and industry should take responsibility to lead our society to a sustainable future. In addition to reducing the human carbon footprint, we should address human over-population and animal farming to further manage the degradation of the environment.
As Buddhists we place a special importance on the health of the world’s natural environment. It was in the forest that the Buddha was born, had his awakening experience and passed away. The Buddha respected all forms of life and the sanctity of nature, and hence we should protect against the deforestation that is threatening to remove an important natural producer of oxygen and consumer of carbon dioxide.