and energy crisis
Challenges to fight poverty and protect the planet.
We, the members of the Belgian Council of Religious
Leaders, are very much concerned by the present
food crisis. We are unfortunately aware that this
crisis is particularly hurting the poorest and the
most vulnerable amongst us. Each of our religions
recognizes in its own way the inviolable dignity
of every human being, and commands us to stand by
the victims of this food shortage.
We discovered that the food surpluses, aimed for
consumption, have reached 20 mds dollars and that
the quantity wasted approximates 100 mds dollars
in one single country. 30 mds dollars are needed
to put up with the present crisis which touches
862 millions of people around the world. The planet
does have the capacity to feed the entire world
population, so it is a moral duty to act quickly.
We are convinced that food security is a fundamental
element to reach the Millenium Objectives for Development.
Moreover we notice numerous links between energy
and food shortages. Using food to create bio fuels
has greatly contributed to these shortages and the
energy cost has widened the gap between rich and
Therefore, we appeal to the governments, the intergovernmental
bodies and the entrepreneurial world to act quickly
in order to solve this food crisis.
In view of the necessity of urgent action, the
Belgian Council of Religious Leaders calls for :
All rich countries to reconsider all agricultural
subsidies in order to avoid dumping, which is greatly
detrimental to the production areas of developing
Forming urgent partnerships to develop new methods
to increase food production in the poor countries,
whilst maintaining bio diversity;
Increase the production of bio fuels without creating
conflicts with food production to insure self sufficiency
and work in the poor countries;
Take measures to reduce the excessive food waste
in the rich countries. Each man, women and child
needs food to survive.
Our religions call on us to unite, and to work
together to put an end to this food crisis. Let
us unite to build a lasting system in which each
community can have its food security guaranteed.
André Leonard (Roman Cathilic
Community); M. Panteleimon (Orthodoxe Community);
Robert Innes (Anglican Community); Guy Liagre en
Francis Renneboog (Protestant-Evangelic Community);
Abdulaziz M. Al-Yahya, Semsettin Ugurlu en Ahmed
Hany Mahfoud (Moslim Community); Albert Guigui (Jewish
Community), Lama Karta, Phra Suddhinanavides en
Frank De Waele (Buddist Community); Herman Janssens
(Hindu Community); Ramesh Mehta (Jaïn Community).