Event explores impact of Pope Francis’s statements on climate change

Pope crop-450On October 8, Religions and Public Life at the Kenan Institute for Ethics and the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions hosted a panel discussion on the pope’s outspoken views on climate change. This summer, Pope Francis issued the encyclical (or “letter”) Laudato Si, in which he staked out his position on climate change and other environmental crises. On September 25, he addressed the United Nations in New York calling for peace and environmental justice on the eve of the adoption of the new Sustainable Development Goals.

Panelists included Fritz Mayer (Professor of Public Policy, Political Science, and Environment at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy), Emily Pechar (PhD Candidate in the University Program in Environmental Policy at Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment), Dirk Philipsen, (Senior Fellow at the Kenan Institute for Ethics at Duke University and a Duke Arts and Sciences Senior Research Scholar), and Paul Griffiths (Warren Professor of Catholic Theology at Duke Divinity School), with moderator Brian Murray, (Director of the Environmental Economics Program at the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions and Research Professor at the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University).

While the panel examined current international dialogue from economic, policy, political, and theological viewpoints, all agreed that the pope’s comments and actions helped put environmental policy on the global agenda.

This event is part of a series, the next of which will be held November 3, featuring Washington Post columnist Michael Gerson and George Mason University School of Law’s Helen Alvaré.