Can invoking God change the minds of climate change deniers?

I wrote a story for 5280 about Jim White, a climate scientist worried about what's happening to something he considers God's creation—the planet: A couple of years ago, the pastor at Trinity Lutheran Church, which White and his wife attend on Sunday mornings, asked the climate scientist to talk to some high schoolers on a youth retreat about water issues and how they impact people around the globe. White spoke about dwindling freshwater supplies, particularly in regions where the world’s most vulnerable citizens live. Congregants of the Boulder church often consider how they can help the poor, White says, and increasingly he discusses the injustice of inequality when he gives presentations about climate change. The way his faith and work overlap feels natural, if not inevitable. “I think it’s actually pretty hard to study the planet, and to study the solar system, and to study how all this stuff works and not loop back to a higher power,” he says. “How it all functions is pretty damned amazing. I have no trouble blending religion and science, and I’m pretty sure that a lot of people don’t.”

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