WOLA: Advocacy for Human Rights in the Americas
20 Jan 2016 | Video

Religion, Environment and Social Conflict in Latin America

American University’s Center for Latin American and Latino Studies (CLALS) and The Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA) invite you to a discussion featuring:

Robert Albro
Research Associate Professor, CLALS

Evan Berry
Associate Professor of Philosophy and Religion, American University

Guillermo Kerber
Program Executive on Care for Creation and Climate Justice, World Council of Churches

Moderated by
Geoff Thale, Program Director, WOLA

Thursday, January 21, 2016
10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

1666 Connecticut Ave NW, Suite 400
Washington, DC 20009

For more information, please contact Jacquelyn Dolezal at [email protected].

To RSVP, please click here.

Light refreshments will be served.

This event will be livestreamed and available at www.wola.org.

Environmental issues—immediate issues such as land use, mining, and access to water, and long term issues such as climate change—have been major sources of conflict in Latin America in recent years. What role has religion played in these conflicts? Have religious beliefs inspired or supported environmental efforts? Have church institutions played mobilizing or mediating roles? What can we expect in the future about the role of religion as environmental conflicts continue to play out in the region?

American University’s Center for Latin American and Latino Studies (CLALS) has just completed a two-year project on the role of religious ideas and religious actors in shaping public debates about environmental issues and climate change throughout Latin America. Join us for a presentation that looks at the project’s findings and examines key cases which offer a perspective on the ways in which religion is currently impacting multilateral climate policy.

These include how religious leaders and grassroots movements have integrated environmental issues into the faith-based call for justice and human rights; the role of transnational religious advocacy networks in international climate change negotiations, including the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change; and indigenous cosmologies in Bolivia and their impact on Bolivia’s approach to the international politics of climate change.
Robert Albro is a Research Associate Professor at American University’s Center for Latin American and Latino Studies, who has written extensively about natural resource conflicts in Bolivia.

Evan Berry is an Associate Professor of Philosophy and Religion at American University and Co-Director of the Ethics, Peace, and Global Affairs master’s program, who has written on the religious underpinnings of environmental movements.

Guillermo Kerber is a Program Executive on Care for Creation and Climate Justice for the World Council of Churches, based in Geneva, Switzerland. He also serves as WCC’s Program Coordinator for Eco-Justice and Diakonia. Dr. Kerber is a leading authority on the role of the transnational church in addressing climate change and other environmental justice issues, and has worked extensively on understanding how climate change impacts rural development, youth, and indigenous peoples, particularly in Latin America. He is co-founder of the Geneva Interfaith Forum on Climate Change, Environment, and Human Rights.