Hundreds of letters calling for greater action on climate change have been delivered to Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison's office in Canberra as part of an interfaith initiative.

Under the campaign coordinated by the Australian Religious Response to Climate Change, the more than 600 letters call for the Morrison Government to submit higher emissions reduction targets to negotiations at the UN Climate Summit in Glasgow, Scotland, this November, to re-start contributions to the UN Green Climate Fund, and to abandon a "gas-led recovery" in favour of job creation in low carbon industries.

ARRCC letters

Some of the letters sent to the Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison as part of the ARRCC initiative. PICTURE: Courtesy of ARRCC

Pentecostal Pastor Rob Buckingham, an ARRCC spokesman, said in a statement that "our faith teaches us that we should care for God’s creation". 

"I appeal to the Prime Minister as a man of faith and ask him to carefully consider his government’s responsibility to ensure the Earth’s environment is protected for the generations to come," said Buckingham, who heads Bayside Church in Melbourne. 

He said the "intensity of climate-fuelled disasters is increasing world-wide, causing extreme human suffering".

"We Christians cannot walk on the other side, worried about the cost of taking action. The costs of not taking action are being paid by the world’s poor and younger generations."

Buckingham said Australia had a "moral responsibility" to wind back coal and gas exports and scale up the use of renewables, with public support provided for communities "currently dependent on coal and gas" to enable them to diversify their local economies.

He said Australia should aim for at least two-thirds emissions reduction in the next decade in order to keep global warming to under two degrees Celsius.

Another letter writer, Fahimah Badrulhisham, co-president of the Muslim Collective, said "fairness suggests...Australia, one of the world's biggest coal producers, should do much more to pull our weight".

"We have both the economic capacity and moral responsibility to drive down our emissions. Therefore, Australia must re-start contributions to the Green Climate Fund to assist our neighbouring countries to adapt to the climate impacts that they are already experiencing. They have emitted far less greenhouse gases than us, but they are the first to bear the brunt of this crisis. This is a question of basic justice."

Rev Meredith Williams, minister of Wentworthville Uniting Church in New South Wales, said governments were "failing in their primary duty to keep people safe".

"People in Western Sydney are very vulnerable to heatwaves, especially those living in poverty," she said. "More generally, Australians are very vulnerable to droughts, fires and floods and climate change will make these much worse for our children and grandchildren."

The ARRCC is coordinating the Australian arm of a global ‘Faiths 4 Climate Justice Day of Action’ on 17th and 18th October.