Briefing Paper: Natural Disasters and Human Responsibility

Indian Ocean 2004 Boxing Day tsunami (Photo: US Navy –Wikimedia)

The John Ray Initiative in the UK has produced an excellent series of Briefing Papers over the years. The latest, #47 by Robert White, should be of particular interest to creation care practitioners:

So-called ‘natural disasters’ such as floods, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions affect huge numbers of people every year. Yet these very processes make the Earth a fertile, habitable place. It is almost always human actions, or lack of action, that turn natural hazards into disasters. Those in low-income countries, the poor and the marginalised, suffer most and are the least able to rebuild after disasters. A Christian perspective recognises the reality of the brokenness of this world caused by human sinfulness, coupled with the certain hope of a new creation where there will be no more disasters and where all creation will reflect God’s glory.

More details and the full paper (free!) are available from the JRI website here.