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Environmental Stewardship Essay

1361 words - 6 pages

Environmental Stewardship
After scanning the headlines, obituaries, and world news sections, a wife tosses her Sunday newspaper into the wastebasket. Moments later, when her husband sees the discarded newspaper and inquires about the scores from last night’s ball game, she quickly pulls up The New York Times application on her smartphone to recite the information he is looking for. In another home, a young boy squeals with delight as he discovers Styrofoam peanuts were used to package the birthday gift that his grandmother had shipped to him. A group of teens toss their soda cans into the garbage after the high school football game. Scenes similar to these play out around the world every ...view middle of the document..., 2014). Global warming is another concern that stems from waste. A statement given by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, “projects an increase in the global temperature of 1.8 – 4 degrees C by the end of this century, which will lead to potentially massive consequences, especially to the most vulnerable, poor and disadvantaged people who contribute to climate change to a lesser extent,” and should be especially convicting of Christians (, 2007). Even those who question the responsibility of caring for the environment acknowledge the Christian’s duty to care for one another. It is easy to see that it is not only the earth at stake, as if the earth alone is not reason enough to take action, but the welfare of wildlife and humankind are also being affected.
In response to the declining state of the environment, there are several steps Christians can take to reduce waste. Recycling is a great place to start to cutting down on waste. Saving paper, plastics, electronics, and glass to take to a recycling center, reusing items when possible, not buying disposable items or individually packaged items, and composting are all common ways that people can recycle. Carpooling to reduce the fuel or using public transportation when possible cuts down on greenhouse gas emissions. It is necessary for Christians to make efforts within their homes and personal lives, as well as implement recycling policies within their businesses to make the largest impact. The next step would be for believers to work to inform and educate others (both fellow believers as well as non-believers) about the importance of waste reduction. It has been reported that each year, a savings of 406 megatons of carbon dioxide equivalent is possible through recycling and composting ninety percent of waste, and cutting out one percent. This would be comparable to closing twenty one percent of America’s power plants that are coal fired (Platt, Ciplet, Bailey, &Lombardi, 2008). Information such as this needs to be distributed in order for others to get involved in waste reduction efforts.
Some have argued that the care of the earth is not a Christian’s responsibility. In his article, “Environmentalism: A Modern Idolatry,” Kevin Clausen contends that Christians and non-Christians alike are making an idol out of the environment and its care (1990). Clausen believes that environmentalist could be making false claims about the harm in pollution, deforestation, pesticides, and overpopulation, nor does he believe that global warming is even a problem. He exerts the idea that caring for the environment actually defies Christian culture (Clausen, 1990). Others believe that because God is all powerful and because His grace is bigger than any sin, and that in the end, God’s will always prevails, thus, the earth is at man’s disposal. This group of people believe that if the earth is destroyed, that being the all-powerful God that He is, He will grant another...

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