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What others have said about religion, the environment - and ARC

Prince Philip receives a copy of the Daoist scripture the Daodejing from ARC's He Xiaoxing and Martin Palmer

For faith-specific quotations on faith and the environment, see the faiths and ecology pages.

HRH The Prince Philip, Founder of ARC

"Like a tree, the Alliance has grown almost imperceptibly as it put down its roots and added new branches... I am much encouraged by the nature and extent of the projects undertaken by the members of the Alliance to promote the conservation of nature.”

UNDP Assistant Secretary-General Olav Kjørven, addressing the ARC event at Windsor Castle, 2009.

"The world's faiths joined together in this cause - if viewed in terms of sheer numbers of people - could become the planet's largest civil society movement for change. With their unparalleled presence throughout the world, the world's religions could be the decisive force that helps tip the scales in favour of a world of climate safety and justice for future generations... this event will be one for the history books,"

And addressing the UN celebration of the Muslim Seven Year EcoPlan, July 2008.

"The fact that you, the Muslim world, are deciding to take a stand and, most importantly, making commitments for real action, and that other faiths are doing the same is by far the biggest news story of 2009 as far as climate change is concerned. It is the biggest mobilization of people and communities that we have ever seen on this issue. You are exercising real leadership, so sorely missed for so long in the negotiations, and bringing a “we can do it”, or dare I say “yes we can” mentality to the global scene. "

Mounkaila Goumandakoye, UNEP director and Regional Representative for Africa, speaking at ARC's Many Heavens, One Earth, Our Continent event, Nairobi 2012.

“We could be more successful, we could be more relevant to the needs and aspirations of the continent, we could have more impact in all African countries if we can work with [the faiths] hand in hand,”

Former Vice President of the US, Al Gore, during a presentation on climate change.

“Buckminster Fuller once wrote, 'If the future of all human civilization depended on me, What would I do? How would I be?' It does depend on all of us but, once again, not just with the light bulbs. We, most of us here, are Americans. We have a democracy. We can change things, but we have to actively change. What's needed really is a higher level of consciousness. And that's hard to -- that's hard to create -- but it is coming. There's an old African proverb that some of you know that says, "If you want to go quickly, go alone; if you want to go far, go together." We have to go far quickly. So we have to have a change in consciousness. A change in commitment. A new sense of urgency. A new appreciation for the privilege that we have of undertaking this challenge.”

Procession of delegates, Assisi 2011

Fulco Pratesi, Honorary President of WWF, in a message to ARC's Sacred Land celebration in Assisi, 2011.

“I am convinced today as I was 25 years ago that faith is the best way to make mankind responsible for its duties towards our only planet, that presents the miracle of life. It has to be the individual conscience of everyone of us, supported by faith, that will enable us to go back to living in harmony with creation and in solidarity with the Earth.”

Reuben Sinauge, National Environment Trust Fund (Kenya) after attending ARC 2-day multifaith workshop in Nairobi, March 2011.

“The two days I have been here really have inspired me. It has changed my mind about the environment and now I think it has a chance to survive. Because you are developing a vision of how to do it, and I see that it is from your conviction, because you are quoting from your scriptures and holy books as to why you should support environmental management to save the planet.” 

Sangha Raja -Patriarch of the Cambodian Buddhists and Patron of ARC

“Thanks to the World Bank and ARC, several local NGOs were able to emerge in Cambodia through the monastic network. These new organizations have allowed Cambodian people to become aware of the importance of education, protection of the environment, flora and fauna, the problem of deforestation. And most importantly, they have enabled Cambodian people to act on these things.”.

Dekila Chungyalpa, WWF’s Sacred Earth program director in a press release announcing a partnership between WWF, ARC and 50 religious leaders from sub-Saharan Africa to challenge the illegal wildlife trade.

“Halting wildlife trade is a moral issue. Faith leaders are the backbone of local communities, providing lessons and guidance that shape how people live their lives. Having religious leaders from all major faiths come together to call for the protection of wildlife on religious grounds and urge their congregations to view the slaughter of elephants and rhinos in Africa as a serious crime may turn the tide of the disaster we face today.”

Carl Pope, Executive Director of the Sierra Club, the oldest and largest grassroots environmental organization in the US with around 1.3 million members.

“I was part of the generation that made the choice - the horrendous strategic blunder - of situating ourselves outside the institutions of faith. Now we have a chance to repent of, and reform from that error."

Neville Sassienie, Board of Deputies of British Jews.

“With help and advice from ARC we have been able to develop the Big Green Jewish website - a goal we have had for a number of years. Our aim then and now was to promote in the Jewish community an active concern for environmental issues as part of being Jewish. This is what ARC’s assistance has made possible for us.”

James Wolfensohn in 2003, when he was President, The World Bank.

“ARC opens up ideas and possibilities that may well be new to many in the world of development and economics, but which, as I know from personal experience, do work”.

Terence Hay Edie speaking on behalf of the UNDP about the new partnership with ARC.

“We are gathered here on account of a growing realization that universal religions have a crucial role to play in the instrumental laws, principles and practices for good environmental stewardship. Both as long established codes of social, ethical and environmental good practice, as well as major land-owners, the world's religions each contain references on the need for a healthy environment to allow human beings to flourish and thrive in balance with the nonhuman world.”

His All Holiness the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, Patron of ARC.

“So here we have the Alliance of Religions and Conservation gathering like Noah all living things (in this case species of believers and bankers) ... With significant investments from religious groups in innovative projects such as alternative energy, job creation, affordable housing and micro-financing we can realise a major shift toward ethical consciousness, as well as material benefits that advance the healing of our wounded planet.”

Prince Hassan of Jordan, direct descendent of the Prophet Muhammad and Patron of ARC.

“ARC is a model of how the faiths can work together. I welcome its contribution in helping to protect our planet.”

Yoshinori Yasuda of the International Research Centre for Japanese Studies and a panel chairperson at the Religious G8 in 2008.

“I am a scientist and this is the first time I am discussing religious problems with religious leaders. I now realise that we must all share their sense of ‘something great’ if we are really going to successfully tackle the big problems facing us…The Japanese word ‘kokoro’, signifying both heart AND mind, captures an important essence of human nature that the English language seems to have lost.”

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