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Page last updated at 17:22 GMT, Monday, 16 November 2009
Churches call for climate action
By Jon Wright
BBC Suffolk

Bishop Nigel Stock
The Bishop says climate change is already affecting the world's poor

Over 100 Suffolk churches are pledging to cut their carbon footprints - and want the Prime Minister to follow suit.

A 1200 signature petition has been handed to Downing Street along with a letter from the Bishop of St Edmundsbury & Ipswich.

The Right Reverend Nigel Stock wants Gordon Brown to make sure the world's poorest countries are given financial help.

The UN Climate Change Conference is being held in December 2009.

Bishop Nigel says in his letter that "a total of $150bn is needed by 2020 to help the poorer countries to adapt and cut their emissions. But only a fraction of that is so far pledged.

"We cannot let climate change further widen the already enormous gulf between rich and poor.

"In our own link Diocese of Kagera in north west Tanzania, where subsistence agriculture is the main activity, change in climate is already causing severe difficulties."

Sue Young, the Diocesan World Development Advisor, handed the petition to Downing Street.

She said: "There is a terrific groundswell of action from the church and from all the major world faiths.

"Ultimately our so-called leaders will have to follow public opinion on this."

She also felt encouraging people to make environmental promises also helps.

"We're taking a lot of practical action. Everyone who signed the petition will take some action. We're reducing the use of paper, encouraging churches to switch to green energy and to improve their recycling.

"I believe it's God's will for the world that all creation is saved.

"I think things will move forward but we mustn't forget the urgency to make sure something does happen at the conference."

The United Nations Climate Change Conference starts on 7 December 2009 in Copenhagen, Denmark.

For more on the arguments surrounding the issue, visit the BBC Climate Change topics pages.




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