The global warming people are wrong, so we should just burn down all the forrests, kill all the endangered species, and suck the planet dry as part of our mandate to fill and subdue the earth, right?
Of course not.
God did not give us a mandate to suck the earth dry. That would be counter-productive, not least of all to ourselves. Instead, he called us to be stewards of creation. In Genesis, you'll note that Adam is created "to tend and keep" the garden. He was the gardener of Eden. What was true of him as the head of the human race is true of the race as a whole: We we are called to steward--manage--the planet and the life forms and resources it contains. The material creation does have an orientation to the service of man (CCC 353), but this does not remove man's responsibility to wisely steward the life and resources God has created (CCC 337 ff).
The problem for many Christians today who would like to find good environmental stewardship groups is that so many of the groups that are out there have been taken over by one form or another of environmental whackiness--even many Christian groups.
With that in mind, I was very pleased recently to renew my acquaintance with the Presbyterian author and scholar, E. Calvin Beisner, who is an old friend. (In fact, it was he who set me right on the birth control issue back when I was a Presbyterian.)
As part of our conversation, Cal informed me about a group he is involved with, the Interfaith Stewardship Alliance, which seeks to bring responsible stewardship principles to the discussion of the environment, without veering off into the extremes of environmental whackiness.
The ISA is truly an interfaith group, as can be seen from looking at a list of its formal advisors, which includes priests, ministers, rabbis, and professionals in a variety of fields.
I'm particularly appreciative of the group's emphasis on managing the environment in a way that does not keep developing countries from developing. It is contrary to human nature and love of neighbor to confine millions of human beings to squalor and poverty in the name of perserving environmental goals that are formulated without respect to the human costs of achieving them. A balance must be found that harmonizes the need for preserving environmental resources with the needs of our fellow human beings, and this group is seeking to help in that effort.
I'd therefore invite you to
CHECK IT OUT.