The Laudato Si Movement sent letters to EU election candidates to challenge them on integral ecology in various European countries (France, Italy, Ireland, Spain, etc.). In each country, the letter was adapted to the national context in order to challenge the main candidates on precise requests about five points: phase out fossil fuels and develop renewable energy, commit to global Climate justice, commit to the Ecological conversion of the agricultural system and a protected environment, commit to going beyond consumerism and promoting temperance/sufficiency and commit to shifting away from the “technocratic paradigm”.

The letters were sent to the lists within each country and made public. You’ll find beyond the original letter.

Text of the Letter: 

Dear Sir, dear Madam, 

We congratulate you on your public commitment to the common good and European affairs by participating in the next European elections. 

Our organization, the Laudato Si’ Movement, is meant to inspire and mobilize Catholics on climate and ecological justice, gathering hundreds of Catholic organizations

As Catholics, we pay much attention to climate change and biodiversity, following Pope Francis’ encyclical, Laudato Si’ (2015), complemented by the apostolical exhortation Laudate Deum (2023). 

Several European “fathers” were inspired by Catholic social teachings, such as Robert Schuman, who recently was nominated “blessed” by the Church. Founded in the mid-twentieth century to build peace, Europe started as a cooperation on coal and steel. In 2024, the European Union’s actions must have “ecological conversion” at their heart. This is the prerequisite for being a peacemaker.

Your commitment will be decisive as the 2025-2030 period will be critical for climate and environmental issues. Therefore, we would like to ask you to make your commitment clear for future voters:

1- Will you phase out fossil fuels and develop renewable energy?

Europe has decided to shrink CO2 emissions by 55% in 2030 (/1990). This will be possible with the 42,5% renewable goal (REDIII), the reduction of energy consumption (EED) by 2030. Full decarbonization and 100% renewable must be reached before 2050.

This means to enhance financing and measures 

  • strong signal to financial actors that all fossil fuels are brown investments and that no funding for new fossil fuel infrastructure will ever be taken, 
  • giving a strong mandate for the EU commission to implement a global fossil fuel non-proliferation treaty (as voted in EUPARL resolution 2022/2673),
  • massive support of alternatives to fossil fuels: wind, solar, geothermal, other short-term (2030!) available green energy solutions, and strong support to building efficiency 

 

2.  Will you commit to global Climate justice?

As Europe is one of the biggest polluters, this means funding the Green Climate Fund, the recently created Loss & Damage fund, raising the initial amount set by the EU Negotiators in Dubai. Europa must also work toward a sovereign debt relief program for vulnerable and developing countries to lighten the debt burden and allow more investment in mitigation and adaptation policies there.

3- Will you commit to the Ecological conversion of the agricultural system and a protected environment? 

Any policy should be set in the best interests of the smallest and most job-intensive farms, acting against isolation in rural areas, preserving ecosystems, and promoting or preserving ecological practices to halt the loss of biodiversity, that is the other main concern of the socio-ecological crisis.  

4 – Will you commit to going beyond consumerism and promoting temperance/sufficiency?

Laudato Si’ urges a “change in lifestyle” (§203). Will you support an ambitious regulation on reparability and fight against greenwashing; a framework for protecting children from advertising; develop alternatives to flying (night and day trains), sustainable mobility in regions and towns (trains and buses, cycling), and decarbonization of trucks?

5 – Will you commit to shifting away from the “technocratic paradigm”?  

Pope Francis explains: “To suppose that all [climate] problems in the future will be able to be solved by new technical interventions is a form of homicidal pragmatism”(Laudate Deum §57). Geoengineering might be dangerous and ineffective, biofuels compete with human food, and the deregulation of New Genomic Techniques is concerning.

For the sake of safety and peace in Europe, justice in the world, and the future of young people, we can already tell you that we are praying for you and your mission.

Please let us know your commitment to caring for our common home, and we will be happy to assist you in your endeavor.

 

Blessings, 

Laudato Si Movement Europe

Pax Christi International