Pope partly blames global warming on humans

Jun 15, 2015, 4:02 PM EDT
Pope Francis waves to the faithful as he arrives in St. Peter's Square for a meeting with the Roman Diocesans on June 14, 2015 in Vatican City, Vatican.
Franco Origlia/Getty Images

An Italian magazine published Pope Francis' much-anticipated encyclical on the environment three days ahead of its scheduled date. In the draft, the Pope cites global warming as a huge threat to life on Earth, and partly blames human activity for its worsening. The New York Times reports:

The Vatican press office said that the 192-page document, posted in Italian on Monday by the Italian magazine L’Espresso, was not the final draft of the pontiff’s encyclical, which will remain under embargo before being released on Thursday.
 
In the document, Francis wrote that he hoped his encyclical would inspire action not just by Roman Catholics but by people of all creeds and religions around the world.
 
“In this encyclical, I intend especially to engage in a dialogue with everyone about our common house,” he wrote.
 
It is unclear how similar, or not, this draft will be to the final document.
 
 
While acknowledging that natural causes, including volcanic activity, play a role in climate change, the pope wrote, “numerous scientific studies indicate that the greater part of global warming in recent decades is due to the great concentration of greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, methane, nitrogen oxide and others) emitted above all due to human activity.”
 
The pope wrote that there is an “urgent and compelling” need for policies that reduce carbon emissions, among other ways, by “replacing fossil fuels and developing sources of renewable energy.”

 

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