Pope Francis Delivers TED Talk Calling for Urgent Climate Action

December 11, 2020 / By: Caroline Hall
cross and moon

In his second-ever TED Talk, Pope Francis issued a pressing call to action to combat global climate change and address growing economic and social inequalities. His talk, part of TED’s “Countdown” climate series this October, emphasized the urgent need for transformation in our global systems to prevent further environmental destruction and injustice. 

Pope Francis stated, “Our goal is clear: to build, within the next decade, a world where we can meet the needs of the present generations, including everyone, without compromising the possibilities of future generations.”  

At the University of St. Thomas, sustainability is core to our mission to advance the common good. In line with Pope Francis’ message, the university aims to develop sustainable systems that preserve and advance social equity, economic prosperity, and the healthy functioning of ecological systems now and in the future.  

To underscore its commitment to sustainability, St. Thomas has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2035. Since setting this goal in 2010the university has already decreased its carbon emissions by 37%. Additionally, in honor of the fifth anniversary of the Paris Climate Agreement this month, St. Thomas signed on to a national statement along with a coalition of over one thousand U.S. cities, states, tribal nations, businesses, higher education institutionsand faith institutions. The statement affirms our commitment to the goals of the Paris Agreement and calls for a national mobilization to advance just and equitable climate solutions. 

As Pope Francis noted, “Each one of us can play a valuable role, if we all begin our journey today -- not tomorrow -- today. Because the future is built today, and it is not built in isolation, but rather in community and in harmony.” 

To learn more about sustainability initiatives at St. Thomas and get involved, visit the university’s sustainability website.