Fasting for Climate Justice

May 1, 2015

Following up on the Lenten Fast for Climate Justice, GCCM invites individuals and organizations to continue the practice of fasting for climate action through two initiatives.

1) Meatless Fridays

Abstinence from meat on Fridays has long been a tradition of the Catholic Church as a way to remember the Passion of Jesus on Good Friday. As with all forms of fasting, this form of self-discipline reminds us of our true dependence on God; it is also tied to charity, enabling the penitent to offer whatever food is not eaten to the poor.

In this light, the GCCM is encouraging abstinence from meat on Fridays, in communion with the Universal Church as a way to reduce one’s negative impact on global climate change.

Scientific studies have revealed that meat consumption results in at least 15% of greenhouse gas emissions (mostly from methane). Meat production also utilizes substantial amounts of water of fresh water: One kg of meat requires approximately 1,500 litre of fresh water to produce (For US residents, this is the equivalency of one pound of meat utilizing approximately 1,800 gallons of fresh water). By reducing meat consumption, individuals can make a substantial impact in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions that ultimately contribute to human-induced climate change, as well as reduce one’s fresh water footprint, both of which affect the poorest among us.

Please join the GCCM and other Catholic parishes and partners in this initiative.  People who register will receive a reminder email the first Thursday of each month as a reminder of their commitment, along with tips of how to live out this practice.

Consider abstaining from meat for the sin of environmental destruction and in faith and hope for change. Consider abstaining to reduce your greenhouse emissions. Or consider abstaining in solidarity who have and will continue to suffer the devastating effects of climate change.

2) Monthly Fast for the Climate

The GCCM also participates in the interfaith Fast for the Climate which takes place the first day of each month. Thousands of individuals and organizations from 92 countries support the Fast for the Climate to call on government officials to take urgent action on climate change. You could fast from food (during the whole day or at least one meal) and/or from activities that produce carbon dioxide (reducing our use of fossil fuels, electricity, plastic, paper and toxins).