A quarter of the world’s population still lacks access to electricity, yet as we seek to right that wrong, we cannot continue to replace it with another harmful injustice. For it is much of that same, impoverished population that has already started to suffer on the frontlines of climate change impact. Many Jewish organizations throughout denominational and national agency life have adopted policies related to energy security and climate change and are increasing their role and commitment to energy justice. The Coalition on the Environment and Jewish Life’s Jewish Energy Covenant Campaign, for example, is helping Jewish leaders increase their role and awareness of the issues by developing a leadership statement on Jewish environmental and energy priorities. There are a multitude of projects engaging in related issues, to describe but a few: JCPA’s Don’t Fund Terror Campaign, AJC’s LEED certification, the UJA-Federation of New York sponsored Jewish Greening Fellowship, the burgeoning of greening programs in congregational life, as well as the multitude of Jewish farming and food justice programs. These are solid examples of how Jews in diverse arenas of communal life not only perceive the connections within energy security, climate change and sustainability, but are also doing something about it.
Coalition on the Environment and Jewish Life
New York, N.Y.