Dear Editor,
On Wednesday, Indiana Senator Mike Braun, a Republican, and Delaware Senator Chris Coons, a Democrat, announced that they will form the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus in the United States Senate. As Indiana Faith Leaders, we want to recognize Senator Braun for stepping up at this historic moment to call for Climate Action.
Responding to climate change is our moral responsibility and civic duty. We are heartened to hear that our Senator is taking a lead on one of the most important challenges of our time.
Climate change affects everyone, especially those who have the least resources. Here in Indiana, we have seen and will continue to see negative consequences: increased flooding affecting crops and water quality; additional insect-borne illnesses; extreme heat waves affecting the health of our children, the elderly, and all those who work outside; and strained social services and government resources. We are also seeing extreme temperature fluctuations causing burdensome impacts on our roads and infrastructure. The impact of climate change will necessitate the movement of people displaced from other communities.
While our daily lives have been affected, the impact on future generations is in magnitudes more severe. The level of severity depends on our degree of response today. Business as usual is not an option.
Thankfully, we are making progress. Last year, Indiana saw more coal-fired capacity go offline than any other year, while more solar capacity was added than ever before. The advanced energy economy is growing by leaps and bounds here in Indiana, employing 90,600 people, five times more Hoosiers than fossil fuels. Building new renewable resources in Indiana is cheaper than using existing coal-fired power plants. We can move towards 100% renewable power generation by 2030.
That’s why we are calling on all Hoosiers—regardless of faith, philosophy, or point-of-view—to join us in lauding Senator Braun for forming the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus. We hope that this caucus will work to implement real policy changes with haste to protect our families, congregations, and communities and mitigate as much as possible the negative impacts of climate change before it is too late. We call on Senator Todd Young to join the bipartisan Climate Solutions Caucus in the Senate and for other members of the Indiana delegation to join the House equivalent Climate Solutions Caucus. We call on members of the Indiana General Assembly to work towards the same goals here at home.
For our children, grandchildren, friends and family, as well as those vulnerable around the globe and down the stream of time, we support this important collaboration by Senator Braun and the Climate Solutions Caucus!
Signed,
INDIANA CLERGY AND FAITH LEADERS
Reverend Wyatt Watkins, Cumberland FBC, Eastside Creation Care Network, Hoosier Interfaith Power & Light
Pastor Darryl Emowry, Angola, IN
Reverend Dennis Shock, Indianapolis, IN
Reverend Kimberly Koczan-Flory, Spiritual Director of Wisdom's Well in Fort Wayne, Indiana
Dori Chandler, Public Policy Director Hoosier Interfaith Power & Light
Ray Wilson, Indianapolis, IN
Dr. Robert Whitaker, Bloomington, IN
Pastor Michael Erwin, Evansville, IN
Reverend Dr. Patricia Tull, Henryville, IN
Rabbi Brian Besser, Bloomington, IN
Reverend Richard Clough, Indianapolis, IN
Pastor Mick Finch, Community Presbyterian Church, Jeffersonville, IN
Nancy S Dickinson, Indianapolis, IN
Reverend Bruce Russell-Jane, Carmel, IN
Rabbi Scott Fox, Indianapolis, IN
Rabbi Michael Harvey, West Lafayette, IN
Rabbi Lew Weiss, Indianapolis, IN
David L. Garshaw, Monroe County, IN
Rabbi Aaron Spiegel, Indianapolis, IN
Reverend Robert Heimach, Indianapolis, IN
Reverend Daniel Meyers, Indianapolis, IN
Reverend Dr. John A. Young, Muncie, IN
Reverend Heath Jones, Northwood Christian Church, Indianapolis, IN
Reverend Jerry Zehr, Carmel, IN
Rabbi Dennis C. Sasso, Congregation Beth-El Zedeck, Indianapolis, IN
Reverend Diane Zehr, Carmel Christian Church, Carmel, IN
Vicar Will Bevins, Indianapolis, IN
Rabbi Justin Kerber, BCC, Indianapolis, IN
Pastor Brad Ruggles, NSPIRE Church, Westfield, IN
Sagar Garg, President Wisdom of the Vedas, Fishers, IN
Reverend Dennis Shock, Carmel, IN
Dr. Cassie Majetic, South Bend, IN
Muzaffar Ahmad, Treasurer Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Fishers, IN
Reverend Dr. Timothy C. Murphy, Senior Pastor Plymouth Congregational Church, Fort Wayne, IN
Annette Johnson, Pike Township, IN
Reverend Rebecca Lockwood, Carmel, IN
Father Charles Allen, GraceUnlimited, Indianapolis, IN
Saiyid M. Shah, Ph.D. Tri-State Creation Care, Newburgh, IN
Mohammad Bashar Mourad, President, Islamic Society of Evansville, Newburgh, IN
Reverend Doctor Sarah Lund, First Congregational Church, Indianapolis, IN
Reverend Brian Flory, Beacon Heights Church of the Brethren, Fort Wayne, IN
Reverend Steven M Conger, Meridian Street United Methodist, Indianapolis, IN
Cantor Melissa Cohen, Congregation Beth-El Zedeck, Indianapolis, IN
Cantor Aviva Marer, Indianapolis, IN
Jamie Hinson-Rieger, Director of Ministry, Unitarian Universalist Church of Indianapolis, Indianapolis, IN
Dr. Paul Myhre, Crawfordsville, IN
Reverend Ann L Pitman, Fort Wayne, IN
Rev. Douglas Kaufman, Benton Mennonite Church, Goshen, IN
Cantor Janice Roger, Indianapolis, IN
Reverend Janna Meyers, St. John United Church of Christ, Indianapolis, IN
Betty Brandt, St Luke's United Methodist Church, Indianapolis, IN