From: THE RIVERSIDE CHURCH 490 Riverside Drive (bet. 120
Sts.) Contact: Rev. Stephen Mann
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Historic Riverside Church Passes Resolution in Support of Statewide Fracking Ban
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Church with Long History of Social Justice Involvement Cites Contamination of Drinking Water, Increased Air Pollution and Global Warming, and Release of Radioactivity In Opposition To Fracking
The Riverside Church in the City of New York has called for a total ban on the practice of
hydraulic fracturing (or “fracking”)
in New York State. The resolution was passed overwhelmingly at the adjourned annual meeting of the congregation on November 24, 2013. Fracking is the process of injecting a combination of toxic chemicals, water and sand into shale
rock formations to release natural gas. The resolution noted the “unacceptable environmental effects”
of fracking, including contamination of drinking water, increased air pollution and global warming, and the release of radioactivity.
In addition to its call for a total ban, the resolution urges the congregation’s members and ministers to “join in principled, nonviolent opposition to fracking” in the state and to “
communicate [their] opposition to all key state of
ficials.” The reso
lution also commits the church to
focus on the issues of global warming and environmental justice in sermons, educational series and activities for
The Riverside Church in the City of New York is an historic Protestant congregation which opened its doors in 1929-30. It is affiliated with the American Baptist Churches, U.S.A. and the United Church of Christ. From the time of its first minister, the Rev. Dr. Harry Emerson Fosdick, it has taken prophetic and progressive stands on both social justice and theological issues. In 1967 the
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his historic “Beyond Vietnam” speech at the church.
Riverside’s commitment to becoming a “Sustainable Earth Community Congregation” is
manifested, in part, through the actions of its Mission and Social Justice Commission, which originally sponsored the resolution. The Interim Senior Minister, the Rev. Stephen Phelps, has often preached on environmental concerns, including fracking, and the Beloved Earth Community promotes environmental awareness and projects at the church.
A copy of the resolution entitled “A Resolution Supporting a Total Ban on Hydraulic Fracturing (Fracking) in New York State as a part of a Commitment to a Sustainable Earth” is attached.
The Riverside Church
(www.theriversidechurchny.org) is an interracial, interdenominational and international church built by John D. Rockefeller Jr. in 1927. The 1,200-member Riverside Church in Morningside Heights has a rich tradition of providing a forum for important civic and spiritual leaders. Past speakers include: The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., President William J. Clinton, the Dalai Lama, Fidel Castro, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Nelson Mandela. # # #