The conversation about climate change isn’t needed now, it was needed yesterday. Since the beginning of the industrial revolution, we have been spiralling out of control with the way we steward our planet.

Draining fossil fuels reserves, paired with over consumption and disposability, we’ve stretched our planet to the point where we run into a planetary resource deficit every year, reaching into our earthly bank account at a rate which we cannot replenish. 

This isn’t, however, just a creation issue. Those who are causing the most harm to the planet (individuals, governments, businesses) are those who are impacted the least. Communities on the frontline of climate change are some of the least responsible, with the smallest carbon footprints. and lack of support for adaptation or mitigation. Climate change is a justice issue which Christians must respond to, and quickly. 

God calls us to act justly and love mercy, so why aren’t we when it comes to climate injustice?


When we talk about climate change, a lot centres on reaching 1.5°C of global warming since pre-industrial times. If the Earth’s average temperature does hit that figure, scientists predict catastrophic consequences for the world; and if it reaches 2°C it will be even worse. 

As the planet warms, sea levels rise, droughts sweep across arid regions, flooding engulfs tropical regions, while extreme weather continues to worsen. We currently sit at 1.3°C of warming and could meet and exceed both of these temperatures within our young people’s lives. However, we know that already communities are being displaced, having lives turned upside down, and are being pushed towards, or deeper into, poverty as a result of the changing climate.

This year, both the G7 and COP26 (the United Nations climate summit) will meet in the UK, firstly in June for the G7 followed by COP26 in November. Climate action and building back better from the global pandemic are what world leaders will be discuss and commit to. We as global citizens should be pushing for commitments which mean real change, particularly for the most vulnerable communities around the world.

Young people are not the first to show concern about climate change, but they are the ones who will be impacted the most. Alongside the most vulnerable around the world, young people are watching their future home be destroyed by systems which operate with little concern for sustainability and future generations. This year, Tearfund released research alongside Youthscape which had two fundamental results: 9/10 young Christians are concerned about climate change, yet only 1/10 think their church is doing enough. This is an issue which young people, including young Christians, care about, yet it seems the church is not listening, talking or acting. Inaction could lead to the church losing young people.

Christian climate scientist Katharine Hayhoe points out that one of the most important things we can do in the face of climate change is have a conversation, but what must follow is action. Space needs to be made for such a conversation, and young people should be invited to take part, to voice their concerns and set out a plan of action to move forward with the urgency this issue deserves. Being prepared and ready to change is vital, and there are a wealth of resources available to help churches do just this, such as Bible study film series, prayer guides, church climate emergency toolkits and even Zoom escape rooms. These equip churches with everything they need to turn their focus on this issue now. 

Now is the time to talk, act and love in the face of climate injustice.

This blog is part of 7 Conversations, a suite of interactive, integrated resources for leaders in local settings seeking to understand young adults and bring them into a rock-solid relationship with Jesus.

7 conversations your church needs to have to reach young adults

7 conversations your church needs to have to reach young adults

A suite of resources to help your church reach, engage and disciple 20s and 30s Find out more