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Covid-19 calls for ‘ecological conversion’, says Caritas PH

Covid-19 calls for ‘ecological conversion’, says Caritas PH

By CBCP News

April 22, 2020

Manila, Philippines

The plans to fight coronavirus pandemic must pay attention to the environment, the Catholic Church’s social action arm said.

In his message for Earth Day, Fr. Edwin Gariguez of Caritas Philippines stressed the need to expand the pandemic narrative beyond health and economic issues.

“We must look at environmental destruction as the root cause of the global pandemic,” Gariguez said.

The church official said the pandemic not only calls for “a deep social and structural conversion” but “a very intimate ecological conversion”.

The fight against disease outbreaks in the future, according to him, would require a “change in our ways toward the environment”.

“The Covid-19 pandemic not only calls for a deep social and structural conversion but for a very intimate ecological conversion and change in our ways toward the environment,” Gariguez said.

“Our fight against the COVID-19 pandemic is in the hands of us all but to prevent more pandemics and crises in the future will depend on how we take care of our common home,” he added.

Among these challenges, Gariguez said is how humans take wildlife out of their natural habitats and exploit finite resources.

He also lamented human activities such as mining, coal projects and large-scale logging for destroying biodiversity “as if we are not part of it”.

Earth Day is an annual global event, observed on April 22, to raise awareness on environmental issues like climate change.

To show care for the earth, Bishop Gerardo Alminaza of San Carlos also called the public to press banks to stop funding coal projects “which pollute air, harm our health and produce expensive electricity”.

“We can make the clean air which we saw during the quarantine permanent by changing the way we do business, and the private sector, specifically the banks, can lead the way in doing its part for a better environment,” he said.