Nikita Daryanani is a summer intern at NCSE. She recently graduated from UC Davis with a degree in Environmental Policy Analysis and Planning, and is interested in global climate change and environmental justice.
July was hot. It was the hottest July on record, but more than this: it was the warmest month ever recorded on Earth. Let that sink in a moment. The first seven months of 2015 were all record breakers, and 2015 is on track to take the record for warmest recorded year. As Paris Hilton likes to say, “That’s hot.”
This month on Friday Flicks, Flickmaster Max Yipp brings us a great video from PBS’s Idea Channel. The featured video asks the question: Was the discovery of global warming humanity’s greatest scientific achievement?
In his recent encyclical Laudato si’, Pope Francis argued the necessity of taking the long view in thinking about environmental ethics. I discussed the encyclical’s argument in part 1, and compared it to Aldo Leopold’s famous “The Land Ethic” in part 2.
The encyclical Laudato si’ lays out what I called Pope Francis’s land ethic, back in part 1. I use that term because, from its earliest pages, I felt strong parallels between the environmental ethic advanced on behalf of the Catholic Church and the writings of pioneering American conservation biologist Aldo Leopold. Compare this passage from Laudato si’:
Theological and philosophical reflections on the situation of humanity and the world can sound tiresome and abstract, unless they are grounded in a fresh analysis of our present situation, which is in many ways unprecedented in the history of humanity. So, before considering how faith brings new incentives and requirements with regard to the world of which we are a part, I will briefly turn to what is happening to our common home.
On Thursday, June 18, 2015, Pope Francis is due to deliver his first encyclical, a major document laying out an interpretation of Catholic doctrine. His theme will be the environment, and especially climate change.