Papal Encyclical on Climate Change

Document leaked condemning ‘Enormous consumption’ two days before its official publication date on 18 June 2015

The 192-page draft of the encyclical – which is the highest level of teaching document a pope can issue – is entitled “Laudato Si: On the care of the common home”. In the paper, Pope Francis presents both scientific and moral reasons for protecting God’s creation. He puts much of the blame for global warming on human activities, mentioning the continual loss of biodiversity in the Amazonian rainforest and the melting of Arctic glaciers among other examples. The draft also says that developing countries are bearing the brunt of the “enormous consumption” of some of the richest. The pontiff calls on all humans – not just Roman Catholics – to prevent the destruction of the ecosystem before the end of the century and to establish a new political authority to tackle pollution. The encyclical has been months in the writing, and the Pope is said to be keen for it to set the tone for the debate at a UN summit on climate change in November in Paris.

Here is the BBC report after the release of the encyclical on 18 June.

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