Published April 13, 2022
Earlier this month, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the final installment of its Sixth Assessment Report. Begun in 1990 and released every six to seven years, the reports seek to offer a comprehensive review of the current state of the science, divided into three parts: (1) what’s causing climate change, (2) why it matters, and (3) what to do about it. Although Part 3 comes last, it is in some respects the most important—for if there is nothing we can feasibly do about climate change, then there is little point in hearing how bad it is. Perhaps we had better just bury our heads in the sand and hope for the best.
Thankfully, despite its fairly dire warnings in parts 1 and 2 about the current trajectory of global warming, the new report on mitigation offers a possible path forward that reflects just how far we have come in terms of technological innovation over the past three decades. Although the IPCC notes that current emissions overshoot the Paris Climate Accords’ stated goal of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, the panel is optimistic that a change of course is possible. And best of all, it may not cost an arm and a leg.
Brad Littlejohn (Ph.D., University of Edinburgh) is the founder and president of the Davenant Institute. He also works as a fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center and has taught for several institutions, including Moody Bible Institute–Spokane, Bethlehem College and Seminary, and Patrick Henry College. He is recognized as a leading scholar of the English theologian Richard Hooker and has published and lectured extensively in the fields of Reformation history, Christian ethics, and political theology. He lives in Landrum, S.C., with his wife, Rachel, and four children.
Brad Littlejohn, Ph.D., is a Fellow in EPPC’s Evangelicals in Civic Life Program, where his work focuses on helping public leaders understand the intellectual and historical foundations of our current breakdown of public trust, social cohesion, and sound governance. His research investigates shifting understandings of the nature of freedom and authority, and how a more full-orbed conception of freedom, rooted in the Christian tradition, can inform policy that respects both the dignity of the individual and the urgency of the common good. He also serves as President of the Davenant Institute.