I have come across a lot of exciting material for my PhD project in the last few weeks. Documents like the papal encyclical Laudato Si raise interesting questions about the connections between the faith community’s involvement in the effort against climate change, anti-capitalism, and the moral contemplation of the environment. For instance, there are interesting parallels between this theological interpretation of biodiversity loss and ‘deep’ ecology in which nature is considered valuable for its own sake and not only for human purposes.
Another encouraging development is the universal enthusiasm for the project. I have discussed it with experts in faith and aboriginal communities, people at Massey College, committee members and potential supervisors, people at parties, environmentalists, journalists, and civil servants. People are sometimes skeptical about whether it will prove logistically feasible to talk to so many people and follow the routes of two phantom pipelines, but nobody has argued that the project is not worth trying.
Once the Community Response to the ad hoc committee on divestment’s report has been assembled, my top priority will be the creation of a major new version of my proposal for circulation to committee members and potential supervisors.