Vatican Cardinal Turkson to Seafarers on Sea Sunday: You’re Causing Global Warming

Cardinal Peter Turkson

Cardinal Peter Turkson. By HaiduculOwn work, CC BY 3.0, Link

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

h/t Breitbart – The Sea Sunday address by Senior Papal advisor Cardinal Peter Turkson has criticised “mechanization and automation” and lack of shore leave, and demanded more use of renewables or “cleaner burning fuels” for cargo ship propulsion.

Message for Sea Sunday 2018
(8th July 2018)

As we celebrate Sea Sunday, we are invited to remember the 1.2 millions of seafarers from all nations, professing different faiths, forced to live for several months in the confined space of a vessel, away from their families and loved ones missing the most important and meaningful events in their families (birthdays’, graduations, etc.) and failing to be present during times of trials and difficulties such as sickness and death.

Seafarers with their profession play a significant role in our global economy by transporting from one corner of the world to another, 90% of all the goods we use in our daily life. For this reason, today while we pray for all of them wherever they are, we would like also to express our gratitude for their tough work full of sacrifices.

Here are some of the challenges that the people of the sea face daily:

Denied shore leave and ship visiting

With the mechanization and automatization, the turnaround time in the ports is reduced to the minimal, leaving the crew with inadequate personal time to rest and relax. Furthermore, if the introduction of the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISPS) might have improved maritime security at the same time it proved to be particularly challenging for seafarers. In numerous ports, crews are finding increasingly difficult to get permission to go ashore, either because of company policy or because restrictive and discriminatory regulations imposed by governments. However, that is not all. Many of our chaplains and ship visitors are denied entering into ports or prevented to go on board of vessels to provide material and spiritual welfare to seafarers who reach shore after weeks at sea.

We deplore these facts that are contradicting the spirit of the Regulation 4.4 of the Maritime Labor Convention (MLC) [1] entered into force on August 20th, 2013, aimed to improve wellbeing of the seafarers. Crews should not be denied the freedom of coming ashore likewise chaplains and ship visitors should not be denied the right to go on board of vessels.

Violence at sea and piracy

Though the situation is improved compared to the previous years, we would like to invite everyone to be more vigilant regarding violence at sea that generally is characterized by piracy. The root cause of piracy is always related to political instability and it is often linked to the fishing industry. Illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing has deprived many coastal states of their natural marine resources, which created a situation of extreme poverty on land, making it easy for unscrupulous individuals to transform desperate and unemployed fishers into pirates.

We request governments and ship owners to put into place all the necessary mechanisms to protect the life of the people at sea and to minimize the economic cost.

Abandonment of vessels and crews

Abandonment of vessels and crews is not a new problem for the maritime industry. According to a newspaper report [2] from 2012 to 2017 more than 1,300 seafarers were abandoned for different reasons in foreign ports far away from home, often with unpaid salaries and without food and fuel provisions for the vessel. Once abandoned the seafarers are left themselves to struggle for food, salaries, immigration status and many more issues unless they are assisted by a welfare organization.

We would like to express our sincere gratitude to all Stella Maris chaplains and volunteers who, from Malta to South Africa, from United Kingdom to United States of America, for months and months have and are still providing material, spiritual, legal and psychological support to several crews of abandoned vessels.

We call for the full implementation of the amendments to the MLC 2006, requiring that a financial security system be put into place in order to ensure that ship owners provide compensation to seafarers and their families in the event of abandonment [3].

Environmental impact on the oceans

In Laudato Si’ Pope Francis says: “There is an urgent need to develop policies so that, in the next few years, the emission of carbon dioxide and other highly polluting gases can be drastically reduced, for example, substituting for fossil fuels and developing sources of renewable energy” (no. 26).

Like all types of transportation that use fossil fuels, vessels produce carbon dioxide emissions that significantly contribute to global climate change and acidification. Besides carbon dioxide ships also release a handful of other pollutants that contribute to the problem.

We support the efforts made by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), to prevent and significantly reduce marine plastic pollution from the shipping sector and in curbing greenhouse gas emissions from ships, as it implements other regulations that will mandate cleaner-burning fuels at sea.

Finally, I invoke the Blessed Mother, Star of the Sea, to extend her maternal protection to the people of the sea and guide them from the dangers of the sea to a secure port.

Cardinal Peter A. Turkson

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In my opinion the politicisation of the Catholic Church on issues like Global Warming and automation is likely a key reason why access to crew is increasingly being denied.

Imagine you were a ship owner – would you really want someone to come on board and stir up discontent about modern work practices, and tell everyone their ship is helping to destroy the planet?

Cardinal Turkson previously appeared in WUWT, when in 2017 Turkson tried to pressure President Trump to abandon his climate pledges to the American People.

69 thoughts on “Vatican Cardinal Turkson to Seafarers on Sea Sunday: You’re Causing Global Warming

    • I think they are genuinely concerned about the fate of their semen, sea men, seafairers.

        • I do not think there is anything sinister about that. Life without parters,home and diverse activities, is somewhat lonesome. I lived abroad in Germany for a while back in the 1970’s, where I found great joy in visiting the Danish Seaman’s Church once a week, meeting friends, listening to a mandatory short prayer, seeing film, having coffee and so on. However, global cooling was never discussed – strange.

  1. Eric, even though you are right to point out these things, you might expect a visit from Papa Francisco and Cardinal Turkson, wherein they perform an exorcism on you. Clearly your outlook would be adjusted by having the devil beaten out of you. Just saying.

  2. “There is an urgent need to develop policies so that, in the next few years, the emission of carbon dioxide and other highly polluting gases can be drastically reduced, for example, substituting for fossil fuels and developing sources of renewable energy” (no. 26).

    Like all types of transportation that use fossil fuels, vessels produce carbon dioxide emissions that significantly contribute to global climate change and acidification. ”

    The above 2 sentences are absolute falsehoods. CO2 is not a pollutant and contributes so little to global warming as to be unmeasurable. It does NOT contribute to acidification. What does the Cardinal want? An electric ship. Maybe the Vatican could invest in electric ships?

    • Triremes manned by slaves? A make-work project coming soon (slowly) to a port near you.

      • The left’s solution to unemployment after they’ve destroyed all the world’s economies.

      • Crispin : There is ALWAYS the Cutty Sark and the Victory . Good thing that
        they preserved these historical vessels.Perhaps if we go back to the days of
        sailing ships , with 6 month voyages and scurvy and the “cat-o-nine-tails”
        then sailors will have more NEED of the Church in their lives…………………
        but I doubt it !
        It seems to be a rather weird advocacy for any organisation that is allegedly
        interested in “welfare”.
        TRADE would seem to be an inevitable casualty and without the wealth it
        creates , our entire Civilisation would be put in jeopardy !
        How come these NUT CASES are “coming out of the woodwork” so often these days ?
        It must be the higher CO2 levels………..perhaps we need a “better” fumigant !!?

    • Alan Tomalty

      “Maybe the Vatican could invest in electric ships?”

      Coming to a port near you soon.

      British government now demanding every new house to have a car charging point installed.

      New lamp posts to have a point as well. Unfortunately, lamp posts are usually around 100 yards apart. In our street where parking is at a premium, that would mean 20 cars or so per lamp post.

      Not going well so far.

      • And not explaining how they propose to generate sufficient electricity….must be unicorn farts again 😵

    • Regarding electric ships.
      There is a ferry going between Helsingør in Denmark and Helsingborg in Sweden.This ferry is battery driven, according to the adverts.
      However, a few months ago, I was on board one of these ferries. I stood on the deck, listening to the sound of the diesel engines.
      As far as I could figure out, the ferries are diesel/electric with a battery bank for buffering and possible extra charge, when resting in the morning hours in the harbor.
      Apart from the slightly false advertising, the idea is not so bad. The ferries run with smaller diesel engines at 80% load all the time, which gives a better fuel economy.
      They should just stop picturing a gigantic size D battery on the ship and claim it is battery driven.

    • Simple solution: Any shipping company that wants to convert their fleet to sailing ships is welcome to do so.

    • A nice fully autonomous robotic ship would be an answer to his prayers.
      Of course the “former” seafarers would have to find something else to do for a living.
      Happy now Cardinal?

  3. Bring back the sailing ships I guess.

    Cleaner burning fuels? Diesel Fuel Marine is already the fuel with the highest BTU per liter. What do they think about a nuclear powered merchant marine? I already know the answer to that question and so do you.

    • “What do they think about a nuclear powered merchant marine? I already know the answer to that question and so do you.”

      Yes we do. The ironic thing is that a nuclear powered merchant marine is readily achievable using technologies perfected by the US and Russian navies decades ago.

    • J hope you are not referring to the “Savannah”? Even though the ship is open for tourists it is not handicapped accessible and is therefore not a suitable alternative to modern alternative propulsion vessels.

  4. I am very disappointed by the apparent scientific irresponsibility and incompetence being demonstrated by the Pope and his advisors. There really is no excuse for the Pope to have swallowed the CAGW line. The current Pope has reversed hundreds of years of effort by the church to reduce poverty and oppression around the world.

  5. The profound ignorance of people in leadership positions is more and more breathtaking.

  6. Whatever happened to sticking to topics of salvation, brotherly love, morality, etc.? I thought they were in the ‘souls’ biz, not the climate biz. Stick to your knitting, Cardinal.

    • Well, after all, AGW *is* a matter of faith, not science. So it seems Cardinal Turkson is right in his proper bailiwick.

      And, in that light, Pope Francis is thereby quite within his purview to declare his pronouncements on AGW a matter of faith and morals, and therefore infallible.

    • ” salvation, brotherly love, morality,”
      You dont get much of that from the church (unless you pay for salvation & have ‘faith’ its ture),
      I could give you a very long list of the LACK of brotherly love & morality from the church & most other religions….but this is not the place.

      • Much of the Bible is a description of how humans (often Christians and Jews) usually act with a LACK of brotherly love & morality.
        It just points out what happens when people act like that.
        It shows that things work better when people are not hubristic and behave kindly.
        It then admonishes the Christians or Jews to not act horribly.

  7. It’s called functional illiteracy, people well intended and poorly informed. Some things should not be taken on faith.

  8. The more these priests make pronouncements on subjects they don’t really understand the more credibility they, and the Catholic church, lose.

    Priests should stock to pronouncements on spiritual matters, or—at least—make sure they exercise a careful look at issues and not simply accept and regurgitate the propaganda of witch hunters.

  9. Sailors lived so much better back when ships were powered by renewable energy (wind).

  10. I would much rather have an African Pope the a liberation theology White Pope.

    This man just took himself out of the running for Pope among sane people.

  11. The Vatican idolizes the golden calf of Anthropogenic Global Warming.
    Shame. Shame. Shame.

  12. First the Pope now this guy.
    Almost like the union of certified priests won a court case.
    Over who shall preach the new religion.

  13. Sigh, another reason to hate CO2 and nary a CO2 supporter in sight except for the vegetation and it has been silenced. Oh the humanity.

  14. Storms aren’t just dangerous for those at sea. LADWP, the electricity supplier for LA, said we didn’t have a heat wave, but that we survived a “heat storm”. Mercy…

  15. Finally, a source of undisputed authority! Where Science and Religion merge to form a more perfect body aka Climate Science.. where belief is everything, and anything else is adjusted to reinforce belief.

  16. A couple of potential solutions:
    Create closed port areas where the crews can go ashore, find food, recreation and lodging if desired while not leaving a segregated port area. (Unable to enter the U.S. at large)
    WRT Abandonment:
    If any crewmen are abandoned in port, give them a free coach airline ticket back home and help them onto the plane so they can get back to their families then bar the freight line company from re-entering the port without paying a fine equal to that abandoned seafarers wages and the cost of their return flight ticket

  17. Tell ya what Pete, sailors will go back to the days of sailing ships when you go back to using only technology from that era yourself. It would be hypocritical and unchristian for you to do any less, so why haven’t you?

  18. Just a thought.
    Christian believes has fallen in intensity and plurality over the years. The Muslim faith, on the other hand, seems to be much more stable.
    So, do we see less fascination with CAGW among Muslims, than among current or former Christians?

  19. If anyone wants to see real pollution from shipping check out Chittagong in Pakistan. You won’t see anything on Google earth.

  20. I am a faithful Catholic but I cannot understand or agree with the Pope or Cardinal Turkson on this issue. I wish they would focus their efforts on encouraging moral virtue rather than vain virtue signaling.

  21. Mechanisation and automation bad? Next thing he’ll tell us that the washingmachine comes from the devil who brought it to us in order to encourage idleness and give women time to develop impure thoughts. Back to the washroom with them, and using the shrubbing board!

  22. “Finally, I invoke the Blessed Mother, Star of the Sea, to extend her maternal protection to the people of the sea and guide them from the dangers of the sea to a secure port.”

    There is something seriously awry with Turkson. He refers to the Phoenician goddess Astarte which decorated their boat prows with a Venus “sickle” on the head, often mistaken for the Christian Mary. Christian they definitely were not, brillaiant sea-people yes. Still they were so much trouble Ramses hat to smash them, a kind of sea Taliban. We owe our alphabet to them.

    If anyone checks what Astarte stood for the raging scandalscould be explained. It is thus no surprise Laudato Si sounds like a Phoenician prayer!

  23. Boats should skim off the plastic in the ocean so every crossing makes it cleaner. What a lost opportunity. It should be mandatory!

  24. Eternal Father strong to save
    Who’s arm doth bind the restless wave
    Who bids the mighty ocean deep
    Its set appointed limits keep
    On land and sea, where e’er you are
    God will stop the SLR

  25. Modern cargo ships should carry large sacks of communion wafers and limes to keep the sailors happy and healthy. The ships should run on renewable hydrogen generated from the sea water they sail in. Zero emissions and perfectly renewable energy. And every ship should have a virgin berth.

  26. For me as a conservative Lutheran, Catholics have always problems to read and understand and believe into the Bible – for some hundred years. (Grin).

    Otherwise they would know that the world and the weather is in God’s hand and it will end when He wishes. Day and night, Summer ans Winter, frost and heat will always be there.

    Even Non-Believers will see a lot of regulatory mechanisms which regulate the climate within certain parameters.

    But the Catholic Church listens to Atheists like Schellnhuber from PIK.

  27. Okay Cardinal, Jesus gave you one job, and only one job, to PREACH CHRIST. He did NOT say to meddle in the affairs of the world. Do your job!


    It’s not just Catholic priests having trouble meeting seafarers.

    The skimping on maintenance because ports want ships out again
    fast is a threat to life and property.

    As for piracy, I am a pacifist by inclination, but I think international marine law should require all large ships to be armed and all captains should be authorised to direct deadly force as necessary to protect their crew.

    The international marine community banned tributyltin; I suspect that if carbon dioxide really were a pollutant they would try to do something about it. However, it’s generally the poorer nations that have the worst environmental records, and making 90% of the world’s trade more expensive sounds like a good recipe for impoverishing the world and making global pollution *worse*. I fear that the Cardinal’s heart may be better than his head.

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