An ecumenical church delegation met with Thomas Chruszczow, the counsellor of the minister of environment in the government of Poland, specially assigned with the preparation of climate UN climate conference (COP 24) in December 2018 in Katowice.
‘The priority for negotiations in COP 24 is to make Paris agreement work and to agree on the package of implementation rules,’ highlighted in the conversation Thomas Chruszczow and added: ‘The urgency in addressing continuing climate change has to be addressed in particular through strengthening of cooperation of all involved parties.’
In referring to ethical aspects of climate, which are now acknowledged as a part of the challenge he underlined: ‘it is difficult to talk about ethics in era of intellectual shortcuts. Therefore, involvement of churches is of utmost importance.’
An ecumenical delegation consisting out of representatives of Conference of European Churches, European Christian Environmental Network, World Council of Churches and ActAlliance Europe emphasised the long standing churches concerns related to climate change. The delegation put a particular importance on engaging into the process churches in Poland.
‘COP 24 is an opportunity for a dialogue with churches in Poland in discussing a particular responsibility of Poland in preparation of the conference, as well as in chairing the negotiating process on implementing the Paris agreement,’ highlighted Peter Pavlovic Study Secretary of CEC and Secretary of ECEN.
In the discussion with the Presidium of the Ecumenical Council of Churches in Poland, as well as church leaders in Katowice were explored possibilities for cooperation and coordination of activities of international ecumenical organisations and churches in Poland before and during the COP 24, including organisation of an ecumenical worship service in Katowice with presence of international guests during days of COP 24.
‘Churches together with their partners are ready to play an active role during the conference. This through an active dialogue with official delegates, as well as through organising events highlighting churches’ concerns and their contribution to the process. Cooperation with churches in Poland and especially in Katowice is for that essential,’ noted stated Henrik Grape, Coordinator of the World Council of Churches Working Group on Climate Change.
ECEN Assembly, which will take place in October 2018 in Katowice, will serve as an important step in preparing churches’ presence in COP 24, as well as in further cooperation with churches in Poland as well as dialogue with political authorities in Poland.