Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its final standard to curb wasteful methane emissions and other harmful air pollutants from the oil and gas sector. On behalf of the more than 600,000 pro-life Christians who spoke out with EEN for stronger methane pollution safeguards over the last decade, the Evangelical Environmental Network applauds President Biden and EPA Administrator Regan for taking this bold action to cut methane pollution from oil & gas production.
Altogether, the new methane safeguards are expected to eliminate an estimated 80% of wasteful methane leaks and prevent approximately 58 million tons of methane (equivalent to 1.5 billion tons of CO2), 16 million tons of toxic volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and 600,000 tons of hazardous air pollutants from being released into the air we breathe over the next 15 years.
The new EPA methane standard is not only good for our health, climate, and God’s creation, but will also create thousands of new, family-sustaining careers in manufacturing, construction, and maintenance operations to deploy leak reducing technologies and practices at new, modified, and existing oil and gas facilities. It also represents wise stewardship of our precious natural resources and good fiscal management. Methane leaks, if captured instead of being wasted into the atmosphere, could heat and power millions of homes and generate billions in revenues.
As contemporary followers of Jesus, our connection to–and understanding of–the relationship between the “Lord of the harvest” and our daily bread remains important. Today, the Farm Bill presents a unique opportunity for Christ followers in America to marry good theology with good policy and support flourishing life and stewardship of God’s creation. Additionally, local partnerships like the one between my home church, Grace Snellville Church in metro Atlanta, and Fresh Harvest serve as a witness to the critical relationship between our food and our faith.
We at the Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) and its policy partner EEN Action thank Governor Shapiro for taking the important step in moving toward a safe and healthy future for all generations by appealing the lower commonwealth court’s decision regarding the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). In Mark 12, the Bible tells us to “love your neighbor as yourself.” This decision allows us to care for the health and wellbeing of our neighbors throughout the commonwealth, especially our children.
Two years since the signing of the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act–a landmark investment in American infrastructure and the health and safety of our communities–remarkable progress has been made, with nearly $400 billion allocated to fund over 40,000 projects throughout the U.S.! These initiatives span various sectors, addressing critical environmental, economic, and social needs. On the anniversary of this historic legislation, we’re reflecting on the ways the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is defending our children’s health, restoring God’s creation, and setting us on the path to a clean energy future fueled by family-sustaining careers for American workers across the country.
Our nation’s farmers, ranchers, and foresters are at the forefront of fulfilling God’s continuing entrustment of the good gifts of land, crops, trees, and livestock. Located in the southwest corner county of SW Minnesota, Shawn and Becky Feikema, co-owners of Feikema Farms, are living out God’s entrustment by practicing no-till, minimum till, cover crop management, and diverse crop rotations on 7,000 acres of prime Minnesota farmland.
Robert Bonnie shares how farmers, ranchers, and forest owners have stewarded our land and how they're stepping up in new ways to address our changing climate. Thanks to benefits in the Inflation Reduction Act, the U.S. Department of Agriculture can further invest in conservation programs and resources for farmers. He stresses the importance of the new U.S. Farm Bill in continuing to support farmers in climate smart agriculture.
EEN's President/CEO gives an update on the current status of the 2023 U.S. Farm Bill and emphasizes why Christians should care about this as an avenue to steward God's creation well. She encourages Congress to not forget about our nation's farmers.
Guest writer, Mark Ogland-Hand, describes how he and his wife have been transitioning their Michigan home away from greenhouse-gas-emitting fuels. They hope to honor God and steward creation by making their home a blessing to future generations of inhabitants.
The Evangelical Environmental Network and our over 150,000 pro-life supporters thank Pennsylvania Governor Shapiro for prioritizing public health and safety by taking a monumental step in addressing the 43rd Statewide Investigating Grand Jury report and recommendations. By taking action to right its wrongs, CNX Resources has a chance to prove itself and change its ways moving forward in its collaboration with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
The Evangelical Environmental Network applauds Senators Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and Roger Wicker (R-MS) for the introduction of the Foreign Pollution Fee Act of 2023. This bill is a win for American workers and will help ensure a healthy environment for all of God’s children, both at home and across the world.
Today, a lower commonwealth court dealt a setback to Pennsylvania’s fight to defend our children from the deadly threats of fossil fuel pollution and vector-borne diseases like Lyme Disease, create new family-empowering careers, and address climate change. The court ruled against the state's CO2 Budget Trading Program and its membership in the successful fair market-based Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). We urge Governor Josh Shapiro and the state Department of Environmental Protection to appeal this misguided ruling and put Pennsylvanians and God’s creation above special interests.
This week, the Evangelical Environmental Network submitted over 37,000 comments from pro-life Christians to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) in support of stronger fuel economy standards on passenger vehicles and light-duty trucks. These comments urged the DOT to increase passenger car fuel economy by 6% a year–and light trucks by 8% a year–beginning in model year 2027, as well as supporting a 10% improvement for pickup trucks and work vans beginning in 2030.
The Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) condemns the heinous acts of terrorism and violence perpetrated against Israel by Hamas and mourns the catastrophic loss of life in Israel and Palestine that has continued throughout the region since Saturday. As pro-life evangelicals, we believe every life is sacred and of unsurpassable worth to God. As such, we are deeply saddened by the thousands of lives lost, including those of mothers, elders, and children.
Today, EEN Action, Inc.–the 501(c)(4) partner of the Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN)–delivered over 51,000 comments from evangelical Christians to Governor Shapiro’s team in support of Pennsylvania reaffirming its commitment to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). These comments are in addition to the more than 30,000 comments from individual pro-life Christians collected by EEN supporting former Governor Wolf’s RGGI rulemaking in 2021.
Today, the Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) submitted 33,059 comments from individual pro-life Christians calling on the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to modernize oil and gas leasing on our public lands (Docket ID No. BLM-2023-0005-0001).
EEN applauds Sen. Hickenlooper and Rep. Peters for their leadership introducing the BIG WIRES Act. The BIG WIRES Act would spur the development of interregional transmission lines to connect our fragmented and disconnected regional grids in our country and will help increase energy reliability, lower costs, and defend life from the harms of prolonged blackouts during extreme weather conditions.
Last month, the University of Pittsburgh released a monumental medical study showing the risks that not only adults face, but also children, due to natural gas (methane) development. The purpose of the study was to explore the relationship between methane and particular health issues such as asthma and birth outcomes. And the results were as shocking as they were alarming. How can Christians defend the lives and health of our children?
On September 6, the White House announced that the Biden Administration canceled existing oil and gas leases on public lands in the Arctic Refuge. Additionally, the Administration announced protections for 13 million acres of the Western Arctic. EEN President/CEO Rev. Dr. Jessica Moerman expresses her support and gratitude.
Today, The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced it will discontinue its reconsideration of the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for Ozone issued during the Trump Administration and instead refocus its efforts on a new scientific review. In response to the EPA’s announcement, the Evangelical Environmental Network’s President & CEO the Rev. Dr. Jessica Moerman issues a statement.
Today, the Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) submitted 51,584 comments from individual pro-life Christians in support of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed standards on carbon pollution from fossil-fuel-fired power plants (Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2023-0072-0001). These proposed standards–which require a cut in carbon emissions by up to 90% from new and existing fossil fuel power plants by 2040–will prevent 1,300 premature deaths, 800 hospital and ER visits, more than 300,000 asthma attacks, 38,000 school absences, and 66,000 lost workdays in the year 2030 alone.
“Why is it so hazy outside?” As an apocalyptic, orange haze settled over much of the eastern U.S. earlier this summer, this question was one that many were asking. In this blog, EEN's Pennsylvania Policy and Outreach Coordinator Carolyn Heckman explores the health effects of soot and wildfire smoke, how extreme weather is linked to climate change, and how we can begin to respond and care for God's creation.
The Evangelical Environmental Network applauds the newly announced partnership between the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to provide up to $350 million in funding for states to identify and permanently reduce methane emissions from low-producing (marginal) conventional oil and gas wells as part of the Methane Emissions Reduction Program. The Methane Emissions Reduction Program, made possible through the Inflation Reduction Act, is central to stopping wasteful and dangerous methane leaks that harm our children’s health and contaminate God’s amazing creation.
Today, the Evangelical Environmental Network is proud to announce our joining of the 1t.org US chapter. 1t.org US, or the Trillion Trees Platform, is a community of US-based companies, nonprofit organizations, and governments committed to reaching the global goal of creating healthy and resilient forests through conservation, restoration, and reforestation.
The Evangelical Environmental Network applauds the U.S. Department of the Interior’s and Bureau of Land Management’s proposed rule to modernize oil and gas leasing on our public lands. The proposed rule is a win for God’s creation, better health, fiscal responsibility, and fairness for the American taxpayer.
The PROVE-IT Act provides the data collection to prove that American manufacturing industries such as steel, aluminum, cement, and batteries – to name a few – are among the cleanest in the world, especially in terms of energy use, efficiency, and carbon intensity. This verifiable data defends American industry against other nations who produce higher pollution levels that threaten the health of our children and American jobs.
The Evangelical Environmental Network applauds the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) investment of $300 million to improve measurement, monitoring, reporting, and verification of greenhouse gas emissions and carbon sequestration in climate-smart agriculture and forestry. On-farm soil carbon measurement and monitoring is one of the best ways to accelerate the long-term adoption of sustainable agriculture and forestry practices, allowing farmers to see for themselves the value and effectiveness of climate-smart agriculture.
Today, the Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) submitted 25,303 comments from individual pro-life Christians calling on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to strengthen safeguards on pollution from light- and medium-duty passenger vehicles (Docket ID No. EPA–HQ–OAR–2022–0829). In June, EEN also delivered 21,676 comments to the EPA in support of stronger standards on heavy-duty vehicle emissions (Docket ID No. EPA–HQ–OAR–2022–0985).
In this blog, Julian Burnett shares how Pennsylvania residents are saving money by switching to solar energy. Energy efficiency can help lower bills and raise home comfort but a lesser known benefit of energy efficiency is reducing the amount of pollutants and other environmental hazards coming into your home. As Christians, we can take advantage of this opportunity to care for our very own "Garden of Eden" as well as one another.
In this blog post, Indy Creation Fest organizer and volunteer Shiloh Cating shares how her scope of caring for God's creation has been expanded to include countless kinds of individual actions and work in her community. She also explores how this deepened understanding has brought her renewed excitement and joy in stewarding creation.
In this blog, Creation Care Champion Jack Joseph reflects on his experiences turning his faith into action for God's creation. Whether minimizing personal environmental impact, contributing to his church's community garden, or getting involved in advocacy, Jack demonstrates the variety of ways that Christians can step up to act on climate and defend God's creation.
In this blog post, EEN's Communications Associate Jaime Butler reflects on her experience visiting Washington, D.C. in March for National Public Health Advocacy Week.
The Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) offers proud support for Senator Hickenlooper (D, CO) and Representative Scott Peters’s (D, CA-50) plans to introduce The Building Integrated Grids With Inter-Regional Energy Supply (BIG WIRES) Act. It is far past time to upgrade our outdated electric transmission. We must provide sufficient interconnection between our three major grids and all wholesale energy markets and transmission planning regions.
There’s no doubt that the conversation around gas stoves is polarizing. As you think about the best way to steward God’s resources in your life and home as you care for creation, you may wonder if there’s any way to cut through the noise and get down to the facts about how gas stoves could be affecting your family’s health and what alternatives are available. If you have been asking these kinds of questions, look no further! Here’s a rundown of why the gas stove debate has become so heated and some reasons why swapping out your gas stove for electric alternatives could be good for your wallet, God’s creation, and your family’s health.
My name is Adelaide Mei, and I had the privilege of working for EEN as a communications intern this past semester. Prior to working for EEN, I had heard quite a bit about creation care as a current student at Calvin University as well as the need for decarbonization as a result of my internship last summer. However, many phrases like “decarbonization,” “decoupling,” “carbon intensity,” and “sustainability” were not very tangible for me and difficult to pinpoint how they applied to me and my life. Working for EEN has solidified for me why we care about pollutants: because they directly affect us and the people around us.
As pro-life evangelicals, scripture calls us to be good stewards of all God’s creation – this includes both the natural world as well as each other, especially children. Defending children’s health is not just an ethical calling, but a biblical one. The commonwealth of Pennsylvania has the opportunity to defend children’s health through two proposed bills: Senate Bill 230 (AEPS/Community Solar) and House Bill 1032 (Solar for Schools Grant Program).
The Evangelical Environmental Network’s (EEN) Board of Directors is pleased to announce the appointment of The Rev. Dr. Jessica Moerman as EEN’s next President and CEO. The Rev. Dr. Jessica Moerman is a climate and environmental scientist, pastor, educator, and advocate. She currently serves as EEN’s Vice President of Science and Policy.
The Evangelical Environmental Network applauds the introduction of the COVER Program Act. This bipartisan, bicameral act will expand and codify the Pandemic Cover Crop Program (PCCP). A program which was supported by the majority of farmers who participated in EEN's listening sessions this past fall and winter. The COVER Act is a no-nonsense Bill that is voluntary, has minimal cost, and supplies huge benefits in soil health, soil conservation, water quality improvements, and food security for all Americans.
In honor of World Bee Day on May 20, 2023, EEN Upper Midwest Coordinator Tim Olsen reflects on the Biblical relevance of bees and honey, the history of beekeeping in the Church, and how being mindful of pollinators can be a meaningful part of practicing creation care.
Recently, the city of New York made the groundbreaking decision to ban gas stoves in new buildings beginning in 2030. While some may view this as a radical step, many American families are already choosing alternatives to gas appliances in their kitchens as they learn about the potential health risks gas stoves may pose to their families. As Evangelical Christians, we care about these possible harms to our children and communities as well as the impact of gas stoves on God’s creation.
The Evangelical Environmental Network applauds the U.S. EPA’s proposed safeguards requiring cuts in carbon pollution by up to 90% from new and existing fossil fuel power plants by 2040. As the second-largest source of U.S. carbon emissions, power plant pollution must be addressed to defend the health and lives of our children and families.
Every child deserves to reach their God-given potential, but as communities across the country–such as East Palestine, OH; Cambria County, PA; and Washington County, KS–grapple with the fallout of contaminated water, air, and soil from toxic leaks and spills, many parents worry for their children’s health and safety. That is why the Evangelical Environmental Network applauds the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) for their proposed rule to better detect and repair methane leaks from natural gas pipelines.
Rev. Tim Olsen, EEN's Upper Midwest Coordinator, shares the story of South Dakota farmer Walt Bones and the stewardship legacy of his family's farms. “As dedicated agriculturalists, the Bones family have been trailblazers in countless arenas. They have been building a legacy of leadership in agriculture, conservation, and sustainability over five generations that has made positive impacts which will continue for decades to come.”
The Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) proudly supports the efforts of Senators Braun (R, IN) and Bennet’s (D, CO) Increased TSP Access Act of 2023. Throughout Fall 2022 and Winter 2023, EEN hosted twelve Farm Bill listening sessions with evangelical farmers across the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic. In our meetings, many farmers called for increased support and resources to be put toward creating more robust and reliable technical assistance programs.
Rev. Tim Olsen, EEN's Upper Midwest Coordinator, reflects on the importance of Congress passing a conservation-forward 2023 Farm Bill and his experience leading listening sessions this past spring with local midwest farmers, agricultural professionals, and church leaders.
Getting to go with EEN to the Climate Action Campaign (CAC) Public Health Lobby in Washington DC was an absolutely unforgettable experience. Growing up, I had always heard of the importance of participating in our government by voting and calling our representatives, but going to DC and getting to actually meet with them in person both reminded me of the importance of talking with our representatives and the privilege of being able to do so.
At the Evangelical Environment Network, we believe no child should have their God-given potential cut short. That’s why we applaud the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Administrator Regan for their proposal strengthening safeguards against hazardous air pollutants under the life-saving Mercury and Air Toxics Standard.
This week, EEN President & CEO Mitch Hescox reflects on Good Friday and what the work of the cross means for all God's creation.
This week, one of EEN's Communications Interns, Adelaide Mei, reflects on what it means to be transformed by Christ and to set our minds on things above.
This week, EEN's Associate Director of PA & OH Outreach Kim Anderson reflects on partaking in the practice of communion.
The Evangelical Environmental Network and our over 150,000 pro-life supporters applaud Governor Josh Shapiro in his budget address for holding up our Commonwealth’s Constitution and its amendment to defend our children’s health:
The people have a right to clean air, pure water, and to the preservation of the natural, scenic, historic, and esthetic values of the environment. Pennsylvania's public natural resources are the common property of all the people, including generations yet to come. As trustees of these resources, the Commonwealth shall conserve and maintain them for the benefit of all the people.
This week, Rev. Allen Drew, Regional Organizer for the Climate Witness Project, reflects on where we as Christians seek power and how the Kingdom of God may look different from our earthly kingdoms and communities.
Today the House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee is marking up H.R. 1141, a bill that would repeal the Methane Emissions Reduction Program that provides a critical new avenue for defending all God's children, both born and unborn, from the health harms of methane pollution and associated climate threats. MERP is a forward-looking program, set to put the U.S. on a path to successfully and efficiently reduce oil and gas methane emissions and spur economic innovation in methane mitigation. The standards and limits set in MERP are in line with the industry-set goals, and many operators understand the need to lower their emissions and have already started doing so. With this in mind, we strongly oppose H.R. 1141 and the threat it poses to children’s health, God’s creation, and our economy.
This week, EEN's Vice President Kyle Meyaard-Schaap reflects on the limitations of created beings and how the reminder that we will return to dust can draw us closer to our creator.
Throughout the season of Lent, members of the EEN community are invited to send us short reflections of how they are living into following Jesus toward the cross and new creation. Today's reflection comes from Jim Tolbert of Asheville, NC.
In this first week of Lent, EEN's Director of Church & Community Engagement Marqus Cole reflects on why we observe the season of Lent and how Jesus can serve as our guide.
A train derailment earlier this month in East Palestine, Ohio has recently received a great deal of attention across the country. The crash resulted in the derailment of 50 cars, including 11 carrying highly toxic chemicals. In all, thousands of gallons of toxic matter spilled and burned at the site of the crash. These toxins – used in making paint, adhesives, and PVC pipes – were spread into the surrounding air, ground, and water. How can we as Christians respond to this incident and take action to prevent future accidents?
Today, the Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance (FACA) announced its priorities for the 2023 Farm Bill. As a general FACA member, The Evangelical Environmental Network proudly supports these policy recommendations. It is time we supply the support for some of America’s best stewards of creation and help our farmers get rewarded for their climate mitigation and adaptation practices so more in the agriculture community can become part of the solution.
EEN's Director of Church & Community Engagement Marqus Cole begins our Lenten devotional with a reflection on Ash Wednesday.
Earlier in February 2023, Senators Bill Cassidy (R, LA) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D, RI) reintroduced the bipartisan and bicameral Reinvesting in Shoreline Economies & Ecosystems (RISEE) Act. The RISSE Act has overwhelming bipartisan support in both chambers, with a host of co-sponsors from both sides of the aisle. The Evangelical Environmental Network is thankful for the efforts of both lead senators and the many cosponsors.
Psalm 33:5 states that, “The Lord loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love.” Today, there’s a wonderful sense of justice as EPA Administrator Regan signed the finalized Mercury and Air Toxics Standard (MATS). This promulgation once again—and hopefully for the final time—determines that it is both appropriate and necessary to regulate mercury and other hazardous gases that have, for decades, inflicted brain damage and other severe health conditions on America’s children.
This overwhelming support from our community is a witness to their strong concern for defending the health and lives of children from the threats of toxins and climate warming methane from the oil/gas industry.
One option to help decrease indoor pollution is swapping out your gas stove for an electric one. Thanks to the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), families have the opportunity to change their old gas stoves out for more efficient and safer electric stoves in an affordable way.
The Evangelical Environmental Network is thankful for EPA Administrator Regan’s announcement this morning regarding lowering the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for PM2.5 to a 9-10 μg/m3 range for the annual standard while keeping the 24-hour standard at 35 μg/m3. While we are not content with the current proposed standards, we are glad the public process is finally underway, and EEN will work to strengthen the rule for the health and safety of God's children.
America’s farmers, foresters, and ranchers are among the most dedicated stewards of God’s creation and are a key part of the solution to climate change. However, significant logistical and financial barriers often exist that make it difficult for these stewards to implement good conservation and climate-friendly practices. That’s why we applaud the inclusion of the bipartisan Growing Climate Solutions Act in the end-of-year funding package.
We at the Evangelical Environmental Network are thankful for the EPA’s promulgation of its Heavy-Duty Vehicle NOx Standard today. This rule is a much-needed first action to curb NOx pollution from freight trucks and other large vehicles. Heavy-duty vehicles contribute 63% of dangerous nitrogen oxides and other pollution in our air, harming respiratory and cardiovascular health, especially in marginalized communities found near freight routes.
In week four of EEN's Christ in Creation Advent Devotional, President & CEO Mitch Hescox reflects on peace.
Rev. Mitch Hescox has announced his retirement from the Evangelical Environmental Network as of August 1, 2023. Mitch has been the President & CEO of EEN for the last 14 years.
On December 6, 2022, EEN's Vice President for Science and Policy Rev. Dr. Jessica Moerman testified before House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis. Below is a written version of her testimony.
In week three of EEN's Christ in Creation Advent Devotional, Vice President for Science & Policy Jessica Moerman reflects on joy.
In week two of EEN's Christ in Creation Advent Devotional, Vice President Kyle Meyaard-Schaap reflects on faith.
The Evangelical Environmental Network thanks the BLM for the release of the BLM Waste Prevention, Production Subject to Royalties, and Resource Conservation Standard. This rule is a good first step but needs to go further. As we study the newly released proposal, we pray BLM will follow the lead of several pioneering western states and propose tangible benefits to end routine flaring and venting to avoid wasteful practices and protect the health of our greatest resource: our children.
In week one of EEN's Christ in Creation Advent Devotional, YECA National Organizer and Spokesperson Tori Goebel reflects on hope.
Today, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released an updated rule to cut methane and other harmful pollutants from oil and gas operations across the U.S. The proposed standard would reduce 36 million tons of leaked methane, 9.7 million tons of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC’s) smog-producing compounds, and 390,000 tons of hazardous air pollutants (HAP’s) such as cancer-causing benzene. These reductions will have a profound impact in defending our kids’ health and lives and will also significantly contribute to addressing the climate crisis.
Since becoming involved in EEN and now as chair of EEN’s Board, I have gained a new understanding, deepening my concern and respect for creation. The vast beauty of God’s creation is certainly a wonder to behold when we take the time away from our busy lives to stop, look, listen, and drink in its majesty. As a champion of creation care and the need for all of us living in this fragile world to care for the future of God’s creation, including addressing the climate crisis, I encourage each of you to support efforts to keep our world clean, safe, and pollution free.
We pray and hope that Save Our Sequoias Act quickly becomes a bipartisan effort in the Senate, as it already is in the House of Representatives, and moves with haste through both chambers to President Biden’s desk.
As President & CEO of EEN, I have partnered with Gina McCarthy for over a decade in our shared mission to defend children’s health and lives from pollution and climate threats. I am grateful for her tireless work as a public servant dedicated to protecting the health of all Americans and applaud her great successes as the first National Climate Advisor.
Today, we celebrate with President Biden, the majority of Americans, and the entire world that the United States is in the process of assuming its position as a global leader on climate change with the signing of The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). The IRA marks the single largest investment to address the climate crisis, build community resilience in the face of extreme weather, and defend the health of our children from life-shortening fossil fuel pollution.
With today’s passage of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) by the US House of Representatives, we are just one signature away from the single largest legislative investment in climate, health, and access to clean energy in American history. As evangelicals, scripture calls us to be good stewards of all God’s creation – this includes both the natural world as well as each other. The IRA opens up new doors and avenues for American families and businesses to do just that.
The Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) applauds Chairwoman Stabenow (D, MI) and her incredible staff for leading the charge to include conservation and climate smart farming provisions in the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).
Today, we celebrate with the majority of Americans and the world that the United States is again assuming its leadership responsibility to address the climate crisis. As the premier medical journal The Lancet states, “Climate change is the greatest global health threat facing the world in the 21st century, but it is also the greatest opportunity to redefine the social and environmental determinants of health.” At the Evangelical Environmental Network, we couldn’t agree more.
As pro-life Christians who believe in the sanctity of life from conception until natural death, EEN supports the EPA’s decision to issue a regulation on ethylene oxide emissions. We are equally encouraged that the EPA has already been working with the industry to reduce emissions and to achieve a life and health-saving standard.
The following is a letter from The Rev. Mitch Hescox, EEN's President and CEO, to Daryl Metcalfe and Greg Vitali, chairs of Pennsylvania's Environmental Resources & Energy Committee about the August 2 committee meeting on Environmental Quality Board regulation #7-544.
With a heavy heart all of EEN mourns the death of our beloved co-founder, Ron Sider. Ron loved Jesus and worked all his life to follow Jesus and live out Jesus’ teaching.
The Evangelical Environmental Network offers high praise to Senate Majority Leader Schumer (D-NY) and Chairman Manchin (D-WV) and their staff for securing the historic agreement that tackles inflation, reduces the deficit, and invests a transformative $369.75 billion in Energy Security and Climate Change through The Inflation Reduction Act Of 2022 (IRA).
While President Biden’s plans to expand offshore wind energy, accelerate America’s transition to clean energy, provide $2.3 billion for communities to build climate-resilient infrastructure, and introduce measures to help cities and states cope with extreme heat are needed and welcome, they are insufficient to meet this moment. That’s why we must also have aggressive, meaningful, bipartisan legislation that will quickly draw down emissions, defend the health of our children, create millions of family-sustaining jobs, and help more communities prepare for the climate impacts of today.
The Supreme Court decision in West Virginia vs. EPA to limit the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to regulate carbon pollution is a significant blow to God’s children here in the United States and throughout creation.
The following is the written testimony of EEN's Vice President for Science & Policy, The Rev. Dr. Jessica Moerman, from the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis hearing entitled "Cutting Methane Pollution: Safeguarding Health, Creating Jobs, and Protecting Our Climate" on June 24, 2022.
EEN is committed to a holistic Biblical approach to caring for life at all stages as equally sacred and worthy of protection. What’s more, we believe the gospel proclaims that grace abounds in brokenness. We will continue to offer God’s grace and share the love and abundant life of Christ with everyone wherever they are, wherever they’ve been, and wherever they’re going.
After decades of fire suppression and the ever-increasing threat of climate change, Giant Sequoias are facing a mortality emergency. The SOS Act will provide land managers with the emergency tools and resources needed to save these remaining ancient wonders from the unprecedented peril threatening their long-term survival.
One of the greatest obstacles to our evangelical community accepting the reality of climate change is the impacts of such change seeming distant and far away. While growing numbers of people experience and recognize climate change through increasingly extreme and erratic weather, our community best relates to climate through understanding the great harm fossil fuel pollution causes to the health of our children, both born and unborn. We begin to accept reality when very real threats are brought into our living rooms and into our lives.
From severe storms and flooding to extreme heat, drought, and wildfires, volatile and unpredictable climate extremes already threaten American families and businesses. The urgency for real solutions to the challenges of climate change is clear – as is the need for all hands on deck. We applaud House Republicans for stepping into the arena with the announcement of the Republican Energy, Climate, and Conservation (ECC) Task Force’s six-point plan.
Today, The Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) submitted 67,755 Comments from Christians to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in support of the “Clean Trucks Standard.”
This guest blog by creative writer and conservation biologist Betsy Painter introduces and explores the concept behind her new book: "A Christian's Guide to Planet Earth."
With the final publication of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) rule on April 23, the table is set for Pennsylvania to start accruing proceeds that could amount to over $200 million every single quarter. It is well past time to move beyond partisan games and to work together for a new, vibrant, bipartisan energy economy for all Pennsylvanians.
The following is the written testimony of EEN President and CEO Rev. Mitch Hescox from the EPA Public Hearing on the Ozone Transport Rule held on April 21, 2022
A thought-provoking parable about our role in stewarding God's creation.
In this guest blog, Nate Pyle, pastor of Christ’s Community Church in Fishers, Indiana, explores and reflects on his journey from meeting God in creation to answering the biblical call to care for creation.
The over 50,000 pro-life Christians who have acted in support of Pennsylvania joining the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) thank Pennsylvania Representatives Mehaffie (R, 106), Stephens (R, 151), and Thomas (178) for voting against HB 637. Our community appreciates your decision to defend our children’s health and build a clean energy economy with family-sustaining jobs for all by reducing carbon emissions and other pollutants.
The legacy of orphaned oil and gas wells and abandoned mine lands has left behind a frightening bequest of toxic air and fouled water. And it is we the people who are left paying the cost of this scarred legacy – not only in taxpayer dollars but with our health and safety. It is time to incentivize the well-being of our children instead of the fossil fuel industry. And it is past time for the American taxpayer to stop footing the bill to clean up the fossil fuel industry’s messes.
While Putin’s war on Ukraine may rage an ocean away, skyrocketing gas prices have brought it to America’s doorstep. Increased gasoline prices touch every corner of our economy, impacting us all. However, amid our real fears about energy prices, we must remember that Putin’s war has far more grave consequences. It’s time for Christians to remember our calling to be peacemakers.
The following is the written testimony of EEN President and CEO Rev. Mitch Hescox from the EPA Public Hearing on the Mercury and Air Toxics Standard (MATS) held on February 24, 2022.
Farmers, ranchers, and foresters are among the most dedicated stewards of God’s creation. We applaud the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s new “Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities” pilot program that will better empower them to put climate-smart conservation practices into action on their land.
As a child growing up in the tiny village of Blandburg, Cambria County, Pennsylvania, where my playgrounds were un-reclaimed coal strip mines less than 75 yards from our backdoor, I am pleased to see today’s announcement regarding the Department of the Interior releasing $725 million first funds of the $11.3 billion funds authorized by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
There’s a wonderful sense of justice following EPA Administrator Regan’s announcement of a new proposal to reinstate the “appropriate and necessary finding” for the Mercury and Air Toxics Standard foolishly removed by the Trump Administration. The EEN community will work to ensure that MATS is reinstated as quickly as possible to defend our children from the debilitating harms of mercury poisoning and toxic air pollution. No child should have their life potential cut short.
The Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) will submit 133,242 comments from individual pro-life Christians in support of and with calls to strengthen the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rulemaking for Existing and New Sources Standards For Reducing Methane and Toxins From the Oil/Gas Sector (Docket #EPA-HQ-OAR-2021-0317).
In November 2021, Olivet Nazarene University completed the installation of 3,124 solar panels on two campus buildings. The panels, provided through a partnership with SunVest Solar, produce a maximum of 1 million watts (megawatts) of electricity during peak sunlight and are estimated to produce about 1,250,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity per year.
The Evangelical Environmental Network, along with over 30,500 pro-life Christians who submitted comments supporting Pennsylvania joining the Regional Green House Gas Initiative, is thankful to Governor Wolf for vetoing the General Assembly’s ill-advised S.C.R.R.R. 1 that would have severely cost our state by denying RGGI membership.
This Christmas and throughout the coming year, I have hope that in the Church we will begin to see a great revival. This new revival will be of true evangelism, the Good News, of the God we know best in Jesus. It’s the Good News of our God who casts out fear in His Love and seeks His peace through justice and righteousness for all people and all creation.
Even with historic progress, a significant gap remains between reality and the healthy and secure future our children and communities truly deserve. For this reason, we are extremely disappointed in Senator Manchin’s announcement that he is stepping away from negotiations on the Build Back Better Act.
The EPA's new tailpipe emissions standards mean we can all breathe easier and get where we need to with less pollution.
On December 15, 2021, Republicans in the Pennsylvania House voted to approve a joint resolution to deny the Independent Regulatory Review Commission’s vote earlier this year affirming that joining The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) is appropriate and necessary. While disappointing, it not unexpected, as our Legislature has—unfortunately—been consistently supporting the fossil fuel industry over our children’s health and the lives of those affected by the pollution the industry generates.
In this critical decade where every action matters, EEN applauds the Biden Administration’s executive order directing the federal government to lead by example by protecting God’s creation and securing a safe climate and healthy environment for our children and all Americans.
Now is the time to exercise sound fiscal responsibility through good economic and environmental stewardship. It’s time to defend our children’s health and future and to stop wasting taxpayer money by cleaning up the fossil fuels legacy of literally dumping the costs on all of us.
A Statement on Pennsylvania's Finalized Air Quality Standard for the Control of VOC Emissions from Oil and Natural Gas Sources.
This standard will be presented to PA DEP’s Air Quality Technical Advisory Committee on Thursday December 9, 2021
The following is the written testimony of Rev. Mitchell Hescox from the EPA Oil and Gas Public Hearing held on November 30, 2021.
57,000 pro-life Christians signed the Evangelical Environmental Network’s (EEN) petition calling for the protection of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The Arctic Refuge is a sacred place, and pro-life Christians know that ongoing attempts to open the land to oil and gas drilling is an affront to God’s creation and the Indigenous sovereignty of the Gwich’in people.
With today’s passage of the Build Back Better Act in the House of Representatives, we are one step closer to giving our children a bright and healthy future that we can be proud to pass down. As Evangelical Christians with a special care for the unborn, we especially celebrate the expanded policies for defending children’s health.
EEN celebrates the signing of the landmark bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act into law today by President Biden because it is good news for our children’s health, our communities’ safety, and the financial wellbeing of our families and the economy. This historic bill, however, must only be the beginning for bold bipartisan climate action. In a time of sharp political division, this bill shows that Congress can come together against the odds to do what’s right for our country and our children’s future. It also shows that climate action can and must continue to be bipartisan.
EEN applauds the House of Representatives for coming together to pass the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The historic investments in this bill will have immediate impact defending our children’s health, restoring God’s creation, and setting us on the path to a clean energy future fueled by family-sustaining jobs for American workers across all corners of the country.
Today the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released two proposed standards for methane pollution from both new and existing sources in the oil and gas industry. We at the Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN) applaud this positive leadership from the EPA that is estimated to accomplish 74% reductions by 2030 compared to 2005 levels. For the sake of our children’s health, we are extremely excited that these new standards target emissions levels directly, rather than production levels, to determine leak and inspection parameters. This effectively rewards responsible firms that work to keep emissions low, while holding marginal and low-producing wells—which have been, in many cases, the worst offenders for harmful emissions—accountable to clean up their messes.
Today’s announcement by President Biden on the Build Back Better (BBB) Framework is good news. The historic $555 billion investment in climate action lays a sound foundation for continuing the fight to defend God’s children at home and around the world.
EEN is very troubled by the Pennsylvania Senate’s vote today to approve Senate Concurrent Regulatory
Review Resolution 1, a resolution disapproving the the CO2 Budget Trading Program which has been
approved by multiple committees of the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) as well as the
state’s Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC). This action, an attempt to stop Pennsylvania from joining the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), puts politics ahead of the health, safety, and future of Pennsylvania citizens, particularly our children.
EEN celebrates President Biden's decision to listen to the majority of Americans and restore the previous boundaries to Bears Ears, Grand Staircase-Escalante, and Northeast Canyons and Seamounts National Monuments.
Asthma, preterm labor, and other respiratory illnesses are all preventable epidemics that Americans have suffered under for far too long. Our children are in danger every day that vehicle pollution continues to choke their air.
Yesterday, Pennsylvania took a crucial step to join a regional initiative to cut carbon emissions and defend our children’s health. The Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC) voted to approve the regulation that will link Pennsylvania to the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI).
While the IPCC report confirmed our greatest concerns about climate change, there is hope if we act now. The IPCC has provided reputable information on climate for the past 30 years, informing us of its risks, severity, and arrival. This most recent report represents eight years of work from 234 authors and includes 14,000 citations to other scientific reports. We lament that humanity has squandered opportunities to act on the IPCC’s warnings sooner. We must not let this happen again.
Today, the U.S. Senate passed a historic bipartisan infrastructure plan. EEN applauds the bipartisan collaboration on one of the most significant climate policies ever, representing the largest investment in history in clean energy transmission and electric vehicle infrastructure.
Moments ago, the U.S. Senate voted to proceed with debate on a historic bipartisan infrastructure plan. The plan represents a major investment in America’s roads, bridges, water lines, ports, and internet connections. It is also one of the most significant climate policies ever, representing the largest investment in history in clean energy transmission and electric vehicle infrastructure.
Congratulations to Senators Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Mike Crapo (R-ID) for the introduction of The Energy Sector Innovation Credit (ESIC) legislation.
The Evangelical Environmental Network applauds Senator Bob Casey (D, PA) for Revitalizing the Civilian Conservation Corps proposal and yesterday's introduction of the Restore Environmental Vitality and Improve Volatile Economy (REVIVE) by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) Act. The Bible reminds us that “the land shall not be sold in perpetuity, for the land is mine; with me you are but aliens and tenants. Throughout the land that you hold, you shall provide for the redemption of the land,” (Leviticus 25:23-24, NRSV).
Today marks the 1-year anniversary of the revelation of the $61 million bribery and racketeering scandal surrounding House Bill 6 (HB 6). This law removed all energy efficiency standards, slashed renewable energy standards, and continues to provide a bailout for two coal plants built in the 1950s (one of which is out of state). Ohio legislators continue to let this $61 million bribe determine the state’s energy present and dictate the state’s energy future.
The Evangelical Environment Network (EEN) applauds Chair Joe Manchin, his energy staff, and Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Steve Daines (R-MT), and Bill Cassidy (R-LA) for their bipartisan support in advancing the almost $100 billion energy infrastructure package yesterday.
The Evangelical Environmental Network applauds the Pennsylvania Department of Environment of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) Environmental Quality Board’s (EQB) vote today to approve a rulemaking authorizing Pennsylvania to take part in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI).
We are thankful for co-sponsors Representatives Diana DeGette of Colorado, Scott Peters of California, and Conor Lamb of Pennsylvania for their leadership in introducing the Methane Congressional Review Act to end the Trump Administration attack on our children. And a special thank you to the 12 Republican members who put life before party lines.
The Evangelical Environment Network, our Board of Directors, millions of our followers–many of whom are farmers, and the 80 members of Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance all joined together to support this bill that provides farmers, rangers, and foresters a voluntary standard to sequester carbon and make money for doing what’s right.
Since the earliest biblical record (Genesis 2:15), Christians have been called to tend and care for God’s creation. Many of our nation’s farmers are practicing Christians who believe in this biblical calling but have found it difficult with falling incomes and low crop prices. The Growing Climate Solutions Act provides a way for the agriculture community–especially family farms–to increase income, enrich the soil, sequester carbon, and empower American farmers as part of the climate solution. The Growing Climate Solutions Act sets up a Verifier Certification Program providing a uniform carbon measuring method that ensures farmers a fair price and an accountable carbon market.
Rep. John Curtis (UT-03) announced today the launch of the Conservative Climate Caucus in the U.S. House of Representatives. The goal of the caucus, according to Curtis, is to create a space for Republican lawmakers to educate each other on conservative policy solutions that can reduce emissions through innovation and resources. At the time of its announcement at a press conference outside the U.S. Capitol, the caucus included more than 50 Republican House members.
Methane Hearing - Testimony from Rev. Mitchell C. Hescox
EPA Methane Listening Session
June 15, 2021
With its passage out of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, we are grateful that the Methane Congressional Review Act is one step closer to being enacted, thus allowing critical methane leak safeguards to be reinstated. We especially thank Representatives Diana DeGette of Colorado, Scott Peters of California, and Conor Lamb of Pennsylvania for their leadership introducing this resolution in the House of the Representatives.
A letter signed by more than 100 evangelical leaders was sent to Members of Congress this morning, calling on them to include key climate and environmental provisions in a final infrastructure package. Since President Biden unveiled his roadmap for infrastructure spending in March, Congress has been stalled on how to translate the principles of the American Jobs Plan into legislation that can pass through the chamber. Biden has expressed his desire to strike a bipartisan deal with Republican lawmakers, but negotiations between the White House and GOP leaders have revealed fundamental differences between the two sides.
The Evangelical Environmental Network and its body of 200,000+ pro-life Christians who support a strong fugitive methane standard are grateful to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for their announcement to begin the process to develop a proposed rule to reduce methane and other harmful pollutants from new and existing sources in the oil and natural gas industry.
The Market Choice Act is a great start in offering a conservative market-based approach to solving the climate crisis and correcting the major market failure of our energy industry. The Evangelical Environmental Network and its over 4 million pro-life Christian supporters have long recommended a carbon fee approach to address the climate crisis. We look forward to seeing this legislation being evaluated in a Congressional Hearing and being improved upon. This bill offers potential for addressing climate change and supplying a revenue stream to defray the cost of funding a major infrastructure & climate adaptation package.
Today, Pennsylvania’s Department of Environmental Protection released its CO2 Budget Trading Program Draft Final-Form Rulemaking. It’s time to account for the actual costs of pollution and make producers pay the cost of the trash and toxins they create. Coal-produced electricity costs 14.87 US cents/kWh more than we pay on our home meter and those costs are born in the hearts, lungs, minds, and lives of our children while the companies get the profit.
Following the bipartisan vote on the Congressional Review Act, we are thankful for co-sponsors Senators Collins (R-ME), Heinrich (D-NM), King (I-ME), Markey (D-MA), and my own Senator Casey (D-PA) plus the great additional backing from Senators Graham (R-SC) and Portman (R-OH) for fantastic bipartisan support for the Methane Congressional Review Act to end the Trump Administration attack on our children.
SB-119’s not so secret intent is to bury the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). Bolstering this goal has been the rallying cry of by some in Harrisburg of unfair job losses in our Commonwealth. The reality is that coal plants will close in Pennsylvania, period. As the current draft RGGI standards being written by the Department of Environmental will take at least a minimum of two years to take effect, RGGI will not likely hasten coal’s demise–that’s already occurring. Back in 2015, Appalachian Power’s (WV) then-President Charles Patton said, “You just can’t go with new coal [plants] at this point in time. It is just not economically feasible to do so…. the economics of alternatives to fossil-based fuels are making inroads in the utility plan. Companies are making decisions today where they are moving away from coal-fired generation.”
We are thankful for President Biden’s ambitious climate pledge to reduce greenhouse gases between 50-52% from 2005 levels by 2030. Meeting this goal will save American lives from its corresponding fossil fuel pollution, restore American leadership in an advanced energy economy, create family-sustaining jobs, and improve the quality of life for all.
The Evangelical Environment Network, our Board of Directors, and our millions of supporters–many of whom are farmers–support The Growing Climate Solutions Act. We applaud the leadership of Senator Mike Braun (R-IN), Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) for the bill’s introduction and the overwhelming bipartisan support of 31 U.S. Senators.
We are pleased with the reintroduction of the Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act (EICDA) by Rep. Deutch (FL-22) and more than twenty other sponsors. EICDA and other carbon pricing proposals are a win-win for American families and the American economy: these proposals reduce carbon pollution, protect low- and middle-income families from cost increases, advance the clean energy economy, incentivize innovation, and keep American businesses competitive on the world stage.