The Jewish community’s mandate to cultivate, protect and nurture the environment derives from the halakhah, and is informed by traditional Jewish sources. The biblical and Talmudic principle of Bal Tashhit, “Do not destroy,” is a principle that has been expanded in the halakhic tradition to proscribe all forms of environmental waste and damage.
Man must consider the consequences of his creative activities in the world, and avoid acts of wanton destruction in order to maintain a proper balance in the environment. The environment, like man, has certain unalienable rights, and these rights are endowed to it by the Creator. It is the obligation of society to respect and protect these rights.
The unprecedented growth of science and technology has become one of the chief characteristics of western civilization. However, the very success of technology threatens to become its undoing. Polluted air and water, littered landscape, an environment contaminated with impurities from radioactive strontium to waste detergents, all place not only the quality of life in jeopardy, but the very survival of many or all species, including the human.
Women’s League urges its members and Sisterhoods to become educated consumers and work within their communities to:
Women’s League for Conservative Judaism, mindful of the uniqueness of life and aware that man has the power to alter nature and exhaust natural resources by his action or its consequences, supports The World United Nations Environment Programme.
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