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(LifeSiteNews) — Pope Francis called for “obligatory and readily monitored” measures to accelerate the world’s “ecological transition” while renewing demands for global governance in an address delivered by Vatican Secretary of State Pietro Cardinal Pietro Parolin at this year’s United Nations COP28 “climate change” conference.

Francis’ participation at the United Nations’ event in Expo City, Dubai was to be an historic occasion – the first of a Pope at a COP conference. Due to poor health, Francis sent Parolin in his stead, who delivered his address urgently calling for political solutions to climate change on Saturday, December 2. 

Francis decried “destruction of the environment” and climate change, which he attributed to human causes, as an “offense against God” stemming from an “obsession” with the desire to “produce and possess.”

He went on to reaffirm calls for global governance as a solution to the so-called “ecological debts” that wealthy nations have “towards many other[r]” nations.

“What is the way out of this? It is the one that you are pursuing in these days: the way of togetherness, multilateralism,” wrote Francis, referring to international cooperation in service of a common goal. 

He cited his recent apostolic exhortation Laudate Deum, which claims that “a different framework for effective cooperation is required” for our “multipolar” world, and that “ … It is a matter of establishing global and effective rules (Laudate Deum, 42).

Francis also suggested countries should place the poorly defined “global common good” above their own “national interests,” citing his past Encyclical Letter Laudato Si’ as well, which lamented that international negotiations “cannot make significant progress due to positions taken by countries which place their national interests above the global common good.” (Laudato Si’, 169)

The pontiff made clear that he believes “political change” is needed to combat such environmental problems and renewed his proposal put forth in his encyclical letter Fratelli Tutti to “establish a global fund that can finally put an end to hunger” with money ordinarily used for weapons and other military endeavors. 

He went on to urge even more controversial measures, proposing political mandates to further countries’ “ecological transition,” under which energy use, for example, could be monitored.

“May this COP prove to be a turning point, demonstrating a clear and tangible political will that can lead to a decisive acceleration of ecological transition through means that meet three requirements: they must be efficient, obligatory and readily monitored,” urged Francis, adding that this should be “achieved in four sectors: energy efficiency; renewable sources; the elimination of fossil fuels; and education in lifestyles that are less dependent on the latter.”

Francis called, moreover, for permanent change: “Please, let us move forward and not turn back,” he implored. He believes governments should tightly enforce energy use mandates and other environmental restrictions, citing Laudato Si’s call for “penalties in cases of non-compliance.”

Cardinal Parolin also delivered an address authored by Francis before the UN Climate Change Conference’s first-ever Faith Pavilion, hosted by the Muslim Council of Elders in collaboration with the COP28 presidency, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and a “diverse coalition of global partners.”

According to the COP28 organizers, the Faith Pavilion is a way for the U.N. to “demonstrat[e] that religious and spiritual communities are essential to the fight against climate change and to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the goals of the Paris Agreement.”

As noted by the U.N., the Faith Pavilion marks enhanced relations between religions and the U.N. climate goals. While previous COP climate events have seen religious involvement from various representatives, the Pavilion is being promoted as a considerable step-up in those relations, placing religions alongside governments and NGOs in the globalized move to implement “climate change” agendas. 

Francis asserted in the speech delivered by Parolin at the Pavilion that in addition to devoting funds to the environment “we need to change our way of life and thus educate everyone to sober and fraternal lifestyles.”

On Sunday, Francis pledged his commitment to promoting climate change action by signing an Abu Dhabi Interfaith Statement for COP28, which calls upon government leaders as well as non-political actors to establish accountability mechanisms” to implement climate action, in addition to a number of other “pro-environment” measures.

It should be noted that COP28 aims not only to promote global action to “protect” the environment but to implement the restrictive goals of the pro-abortion 2015 Paris Agreement.

As reported in a previous LifeSiteNews article, the Paris agreement calls for countries to “promote … gender equality, empowerment of women and intergenerational equity,” among other things. These phrases, pro-lifers say, are common to U.N. documents as euphemisms for the promotion of homosexuality and abortion.

Francis had been due to attend the COP26 conference in Glasgow in 2021 but decided to remain in Rome and send Parolin in his stead.