Following the principles that Brigham Young and Hugh Nibley described, and in accord with the fundamental tenets of Christianity, we believe that everyone deserves the right to air, water, topsoil, food and a workplace and community free of pollution that degrades health and wellbeing. All should have access to parks, natural areas, and information about the known hazards and uncertain risks to which we are exposed. Further, we should have the right to participate in decisions on resource use and living conditions, so that the natural world and its fantastic diversity of living creatures, habitats and interactions will be sustained and survive. We support the restoration and maintenance of ecosystem integrity and biodiversity, and promote public policies that protect waterways, lakes, wetlands and watersheds through creating surrounding green “corridors”. We also believe public lands should remain public so that they are preserved for wilderness and recreation.
We believe that the unequal distribution of wealth and power exposes communities with the least power to the greatest environmental abuse. Only when there are no more powerless communities to serve as environmental dumps can we eliminate pollution sources that belong in nobody’s backyard. A basic demand of proper stewardship is the requirement that polluters pay full cleanup costs, including the mitigation of later health problems in exposed communities.
The great systems that sustain life on Earth–the atmosphere, oceans, lakes, rivers and groundwater, soils and natural ecosystems–must be recognized as our common divine inheritance and managed democratically. Left to the logic of the private market, as Hugh Nibley stated, they will be exploited to annihilation. Our children will inherit a healthy planet only if we end the profit-driven throw-away corporate economy and replace it with a production system designed for systematic reuse and recycling of materials. We promote public policy that builds healthy, sustainable communities that are walkable, bika-able, and that provide for all living within them a healthy, local source of food, air and water.
We believe our global system is in grave peril from the unrestricted use of fossil fuels that powered the industrial revolution. We are moving toward conditions incompatible with those that made human civilization possible. A transition to renewable energy and innovation in energy production & distribution can continue to raise living standards. but quality of life can improve even more with cultural change–in Bill McKibben’s phrase, toward “few belongings and more belonging.” MESA promotes renewable clean energy, and a clean-energy economy.
Mormon Environmental Stewardship Alliance (MESA) believes in action. Only through concerted action in the public domain–the domain of politics–will important policy changes be undertaken. MESA will undertake these actions in pursuit of our aims which are: public education, the formulation of public policy, discussions with elected officials, petitioning of government, partnering with other environmental organizations, and peaceful demonstration. We do so in humility and according to the dictates of our conscience, and with full attention to divine commandments that we believe should govern our behavior in the world and toward each other.