5780: The Year of Environmental Teshuva

The Jerusalem Post published the following op-ed by Nigel Savage, CEO of Hazon, on October 2nd, 2019.

We are over-consuming the world.

We learn from the Rambam that teshuva (repentance) has three main components.

First, we need to reflect on our behavior.

Secondly, we must commit to change our ways.

And thirdly, we have to try to make amends for the damage we have done.

This is an opposite summation of what the entire Western world now needs to do in relation to the global climate crisis. It’s a useful frame as we enter this New Year.

Reflecting on our behavior. We are over-consuming the world. We have too much stuff. We have too many cars, we get on too many planes and we eat too much industrial meat and dairy. (It may indeed be “kosher,” narrowly construed, but industrial meat is one of the largest drivers of anthropogenic climate change. The more we learn about the environmental costs and the ethical shortcomings of industrial meat, the clearer it becomes that we have to change how we eat.)

Committing to change our ways. So as we sit in synagogue or gather for celebrations with family members and with friends, we must make a genuine commitment to change in this coming year. We are past the point – far past the point – at which “carry on as you were” is in any way tenable. …

Read the entire op-ed here.

About Becky O'Brien

Hazon is America's largest Jewish environmental organization. We create healthier and more sustainable communities in the Jewish world and beyond. Hazon in Colorado is led by Becky O'Brien, Boulder Director and Sarah Kornhauser, Denver Director.

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