Vote!

The equation is simple. Belief in God and scientific confirmation of climate change coalesce into the imperative that the believer must vote climate change this November. The fact of climate change demands that we vote for candidates willing to address global warming at all levels of government. The local races are just as important as the state and national ones.

What is the most important thing a religious person must do now? Vote.

You feel the imperative to praise God? Vote for God’s creation.

You feel the need to repent to God? Then vote for God’s gifts to humanity.

Do you believe that holy words and the sacred relationship with God are being subverted for selfish gain? Vote.

Feeling helpless? Vote.

Vote with your faith, but vote.

“We won’t get fooled again!”

While the United States has been locked down, carbon emissions have decreased by 5.5 percent. The skies have cleared over major metropolitan areas and the sunny days are simply gorgeous. However, sheltering Americans in their homes left the rest of the nation producing carbon emissions at an incredible 94.5 percent of the rate before the pandemic struck. How could this happen?

The answer is the fossil fuel industry. The utilities are still running at full tilt. Diesel trucks and trains are still crisscrossing the country at steady rates. Essential manufacturing and cattle management are continuing unabated.

We have been taken for idiots.

For decades, climate change advocates have worked at the grassroots level, encouraging individuals and households to become involved in the fight to save the planet from global warming. The most common method of raising volunteers is teaching them individual responsibility, of reducing their own carbon footprints. Our websites, toolkits, and workshops are full of strategies and advice for individual choices and household choices for green living. Most of material is good and worthy.

In fact, many of the best suggestions for individual greening are also promoted by the fossil fuel industry, particularly utilities. They offer promotions for digital thermostats and LED lightbulbs nearly every month. We should have been more suspicious.

The utilities have been emphasizing their customer’s individual responsibility for climate change while remaining silent about their own outsized culpability. “Don’t look at us,” they are saying, “look at what you are doing. You are guilty of not doing enough.” At a time when households are absolutely doing their part by staying home, the carbon emissions only dropped 5.5%.

The utilities are responsible for most of the rest of the carbon pollution, 60%, 70%, or 80%. The reality could not be starker. Utilities were, are, and will be the worst polluters until we stop them. At this time of pandemic, energy sector bailouts should be targeted at clean renewable energy sources. Natural gas and coal powerplants should be wound down as soon as possible.

Furthermore, the only path out of the pandemic-caused recession/depression is government spending. FDR’s New Deal was a spending plan focusing on infrastructure, of which the United States is already in great need. The new energy structure necessary for the 21st century needs to be built and it must be built for a green energy economy.

Individual responsibility is a still a great entry into the green activism. However, the ultimate goal is not individual actions, but government and industry actions. Let us not allow ourselves to be taken for malleable idiots again.

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Faith Climate Action Week

With Earth Day coming rapidly on April 22, NYIPL joins with other IPL chapters to celebrate the entire week of April 15-24 as Faith Climate Action Week. You can start right away by downloading resources here and here. Despite the greed and short-sightedness that is widespread, we can be still be good stewards of God’s creation.

Hudson River Presbytery

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The Hudson River Presbytery is a judicatory of 82 Presbyterian churches spread across eight counties in the Hudson River Valley. Included in this presbytery are NYIPL member congregations White Plains Presbyterian (above), Holmes Presbyterian Camp, and Huguenot Memorial. The Hudson River Presbytery is very active on earth care issues. They have a group called the Food Justice Corps which is five young people who come together regularly who explore food justice issues. The group is not just educational but also a leadership development program: The corps members will develop their own projects to bring back to their congregations next spring.

Welcome, Hudson River Presbytery and White Plains Presbyterian!

We’re Looking for a New Executive Director

Gerry Falco presenting ESC report

Executive Director Job Description

Fall 2015 New York Interfaith Power & Light is a faith-?based nonprofit organization working to fight climate change. We believe climate change is the moral issue of our time. We are the New York state chapter of the Interfaith Power & Light movement, with chapters in 40 states. We have 110 member congregations throughout New York.

We help congregations reduce their carbon footprint, increase energy efficiency, explore opportunities to use renewable energy, and educate their members on climate change. We also encourage people of faith to speak to politicians and others in positions of power about global warming, and to collaborate with other faith communities in these efforts.

We are seeking a part-time (20 hours/week) Executive Director. This is a work-? from-?home position, and can be located anywhere in the state of New York.

The Executive Director is responsible for leading, growing, and managing NYIPL, under the direction of the Board of Directors. The Executive Director is expected to help NYIPL deliver on its mission while achieving financial stability. Major responsibilities include fundraising, board development, public relations, assurance of legal and fiduciary compliance, growing our membership and increasing active participation by current members in the organization.

Responsibilities

  • Fundraising work with the board to ensure the financial health of the organization. Develop and implement fundraising strategies, including major donors, direct mail, and grant writing.
  • Board development coordinate board and committee meetings.
  • Program ensure congregations have access to information about energy audits, energy efficiency in general, and renewable energy options. Within the constraints of our 501(c)(3) status, let politicians and others in power know that people of faith care about climate change.
  • Outreach recruit new member congregations, new donors, and new board members.
  • Communications update website and social media with current news and upcoming events; publish a weekly electronic newsletter.
  • Speaking and/or representing the organization at public/private events.
  • Administration process donations, manage membership information and budget.

Qualifications

  • Commitment to our interfaith mission, and passionate about climate change
  • Proven track record at the executive level of a non-profit organization or a similar entity
  • Three or more years of fundraising experience
  • Excellent organizational and communication skills
  • Able to articulate one’s faith commitment in relationship to care for the earth
  • Public speaking experience
  • Experience with social media
  • Four year college degree, graduate degree a plus
  • Solid computer skills and accounting experience a plus
  • Must have access to high-?speed internet, printer, and telephone Salary and Benefits

 

Salary: $18,000 -? $25,000, based on experience, plus business expense reimbursements as budgeted. This is a salaried, executive position, not considered to be hourly.

Travel: Moderate, including visits to congregations across New York State, attendance at the annual IPL meeting in Washington DC, and attendance at the annual NYIPL meeting. (Travel expenses are reimbursed.)

Benefits: NYIPL is unable to offer benefits (health insurance, paid time off, etc.) at this time. With proper commitment, fundraising and growth, the Board will make available additional salary and benefits for this to become a full-?time position.

Termination: On two weeks written notice from the Board of Directors or the Executive Director. There is no minimum length of contract implied in this position.

To apply, please send a resume, cover letter, and three references to nyipljob@gmail.com.