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Washington DC, May 27, 2014 — Our Washington based EcoSikh team met with senior White House officials and other religious leaders last month to discuss the US President Barack Obama’s Climate Action Plan.
EcoSikh’s representative Dimple Sandhu, along with other interfaith community leaders and activists, discussed how religious communities could take action and participate in the Administration’s plan to control carbon pollution and maintain clean air for future generations. Methods that religious communities could participate in environmental programs included abiding by environmental standards and working internationally with communities in other countries to reduce carbon emissions.
Representatives from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) were also present, and discussed the EPA’s key role in working with states and other stakeholders to establish standards for new and existing power plants and other energy sources.
Participants planned to work on the plan from a global as well as national perspective, by negotiating and addressing new policies for countries other than the U.S. as well.
Sandhu spoke of the most recent Sikh Environment Day which drew Sikhs from around the world in celebrating enthronement day of Guru Har Rai ji (the seventh Sikh Guru) and his efforts to preserve the environment and the well being of animals. Hundreds of Gurdwaras and schools in India and the diaspora (from countries as diverse as Nigeria and Malaysia, as well as the US and UK and Canada) celebrated this year on March 14. Other EcoSikh efforts discussed at the meeting were Sikh youth workshops, which inspire Sikh youth at Gurdwaras and camps to adopt eco-friendly practices in their daily lives.
The US Administration’s plan highlighted how investments in the clean energy economy would expand the number of green job opportunities. The Federal Government is also working to address environmental and heath disparities in different communities throughout the country.
EcoSikh aims to work on a Climate Change Statement on behalf of Sikhism and engage the community nationally and internationally on this issue.