Policies

Reykjavik Declaration on the Climate Change Crisis

  • Date / 2019
  • Location Ratified / Reykjavik, Iceland
  • Ratifying Body / General Assembly
  • Status / Current

Proposed by the Boards of the European Humanist Federation, Humanists International, and Young Humanists International

Human beings are part of the natural world, but have a disproportionate effect on the global environment and biodiversity. Throughout history, our species has used the natural world to increase individual and collective wellbeing, and the impact we have is no longer sustainable. Policies adopted by governments should be informed by scientific findings. Governments need to respect the overwhelming conclusions reached by the international scientific community, including that the overuse of natural resources and the increase in greenhouse gas emissions is driving catastrophic climate change, threatening the diversity of life on Earth and the sustainability of human societies. Indeed, extreme scenarios pose an existential risk to humanity. The world must act with urgency and in a globally coordinated way to reduce and prevent human contributions to climate change, to mitigate climate impacts and adapt to them.

We recognise:

We support:

We call upon all humanist organizations, civil society in general, and all individuals around the world to:

  1. Highlight to their governments and regional bodies the need for urgent action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and make land-use and resource extraction sustainable, and to protect and conserve wild habitats;
  2. Foster a social and political commitment to urgent action and long-term policymaking to mitigate and prevent climate change.

This policy supersedes the following Humanists International policy statements, and they will therefore be archived:

  1. ‘Ecology’, Humanists International, Regional Congress, Australia, 2000
  2. ‘The extermination of birds of passage’, Humanists International, World Humanist Congress, Amsterdam, Netherlands, 1974
  3. ‘Ecology’, Humanists International, Executive Committee, 1971

Suggested academic reference

'Reykjavik Declaration on the Climate Change Crisis', Humanists International, General Assembly, Reykjavik, Iceland, 2019

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