The Islamic Climate Change Declaration will be presented today.

The declaration, which will be held at the UN headquarters, will be presented to the President of the UN General Assembly, Mr Mogens Lykketoff.

The occasion will also mark the official launch of the Global Muslim Climate Network, as support for climate action within the world’s second largest faith group continues to grow.

Today, representatives of more than 150 nations, including 60 heads of state, will sign the Paris Agreement on Climate Change adopted at the UN Climate Change Conference in Paris on 12 December 2015. This will be a record attendance in UN history for a treaty signing ceremony.

The Islamic Declaration on Climate Change being presented was drafted and adopted by the International Islamic Climate Change Symposium (Istanbul 17-18 August), an event co-sponsored by Islamic Relief Worldwide, GreenFaith and the Islamic Foundation for Ecology and Environmental Sciences. It has since been endorsed by over 80 Muslim leaders. The Declaration being presented to the UN calls for all nations with the greatest responsibility and capacity to lead the way in tackling climate change to phase-out the use of fossil fuels and shift to 100% renewable sources of energy.

“Islam teaches us that ‘man is simply a steward holding whatever is on earth in trust’,” says Nana Firman, Co-Chair of the Global Muslim Climate Network. “The Declaration calls upon all nations and their leaders to drastically reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and support vulnerable communities, both in addressing the impacts of climate change and in harnessing renewable energy.”

The new Global Muslim Climate Network, launched today, will strengthen cooperation and advance engagement of the Muslim community in climate action at local, national and international levels – from setting up global grassroots initiatives such as the Green Ramadan project to encouraging Muslim governments to show leadership in the fossil fuel phase-out and transition to renewable energy. This new network can play a key role ahead of the next major round of international climate negotiations i.e. the 22nd Conference of Parties to the UN Framework on the Convention on Climate Change (COP 22), which will be taking place in the Muslim-majority country Morocco between 7-18 November.

“There is a real grassroots movement building across Muslim communities across the globe to reverse the effects of climate change,” says Lamia El Amri, Vice-chair of the Board of Trustees of Islamic Relief Worldwide. “With COP 22 taking place in Morocco, the onus is on the governments of Muslim majority countries and religious leaders to step up and play their role in this growing movement.”

Today’s event demonstrates the rising tide of faith communities actively supporting urgent climate action. “Faith communities, including global Muslims, made their intentions and voices heard last year by releasing historic declarations on the environment and climate change. These include the remarkable Papal Encyclical on the Environment and Climate Change, Laudato Si.” says Imam Saffet Abid Catovic, drafting committee member of the Islamic Climate Change Declaration.

Several Muslim leaders were amongst the 270 signatories of the Interfaith Climate Change Statement to world leaders presented to the President of the UN General Assembly at a formal ceremony at the UN Church Centre on Monday 18th April – see more here.

Editor’s notes:

[1] Members of the delegation – available for interview:

  • Imam Al-Hajj Talib ‘Abdur-Rashid, Vice-President for the Muslim Alliance – USA and Canada
  • Imam Saffet Catovic, Chaplain at Drew University & Founder of Green Muslims of New Jersey – USA
  • Lamia El Amri, Vice-chair Board of Trustees of Islamic Relief Worldwide
  • Dr Mohamed Amr Attawia, Board of Directors of Islamic Relief USA
  • Nana Firman, GreenFaith Fellow and White House Champion of Change – Indonesia
  • Wael Hmaidan, Director of Climate Action Network International – Lebanon

[2} Information and the text of the Islamic Declaration on Climate Change can be found here.

[3] Photos of the hand-in of the Islamic Declaration can be found here.

[4] About the organisations involved

GreenFaith is an interfaith coalition for the environment addressing environmental issues holistically, we are committed to sharing resources and tools religious institutions need to engage environmental issues and become religious-environmental leaders.

About Global Muslim Climate Network:

The Global Muslim Climate Network was born out of the launch of the Islamic Climate Change Declaration Launch, which took place in Istanbul in August 2015 out of recognition that Muslims must take action at a local and global level to implement their faith teachings on protecting the environment. The group established in April 2016 is a network made up of Muslim activists from 10+ countries. The coordinators of the network are Greenfaith and Islamic Relief Worldwide.

For further informatio, please contact Mohammad Shakir – 020 7593 3237 / 07747 022590