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Reform Jewish Leader Commends Global Warming Principles, Calls for Further Action

Pelavin: “Sen. Boxer’s call for action this year on climate change … gives us great hope that our leaders are finally poised to confront this critical issue.”

Contact: Kate Bigam or Rachel Cohen
202.387.2800 |

WASHINGTON, D.C., February 3, 2009 — In response to the principles for global warming legislation released today by Senator Barbara Boxer, Mark J. Pelavin, associate director of the Religious Action Center, issued the following statement:

We are encouraged by the principles established today by Sen. Barbara Boxer, which will guide her work and that of her colleagues on the Environment and Public Works Committee as they tackle the climate change crisis. Sen. Boxer’s call for action this year on climate change, including investments in renewable energy technology and assistance to Americans in adapting to the new low-carbon economy, gives us great hope that our leaders are finally poised to confront this critical issue.

As Jews, we are commanded to be stewards of the earth. We are also called upon to protect the most vulnerable among us – those in developing nations who contribute the least to but stand to suffer the most from climate change. In that spirit, we applaud Sen. Boxer’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions commensurate with scientific understanding of our global climate and mindful of the disastrous consequences that will result if we do not act immediately.

While the principles released today represent a strong start, we must move from words to action as quickly as possible. We urge Sen. Boxer and the members of the committee to advance legislation that will reduce carbon emissions, create green jobs and increase our energy security. Further, we must continue to speak out on the effects of climate change on the poorest and most vulnerable.

We look forward to working with the members of the Senate, as well as the House and the new Administration, to enact comprehensive, bipartisan legislation to confront climate change in a way that protects our planet, grows the green economy and promotes national and global security.


The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism is the Washington office of the Union for Reform Judaism, whose more than 900 congregations across North America encompass 1.5 million Reform Jews, and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, whose membership includes more than 1,800 Reform rabbis.

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