COEJL is an umbrella organization seeking to mobilize the Jewish community to conserve energy, increase sustainability, and advocate for policies that increase energy efficiency and security while building core Jewish environmental knowledge and serving as a Jewish voice in the broader interfaith community. COEJL does this by:
- Networking with Jewish leaders and institutions in order to be more sustainable;
- Advocating for policies that increase efficiency and promote energy independence;
- Building core Jewish knowledge on environmental issues;
- Serving as a Jewish voice in the interfaith community; and,
- Linking into a network of 27 national participating organizations, 125 local Jewish community partner agencies, and a core group of Jewish environmental organizations with a broad reach of interests, programming and constituencies.
The Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA)
COEJL has been an initiative at the Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA, previously NJCRAC) since it was founded in 1993. JCPA is the public affairs arm of the organized Jewish community, which serves as the national coordinating and advisory body for the 14 national and 125 local agencies comprising the field of Jewish community relations.
The mission of JCPA is to serve as the representative voice of the organized American Jewish community in addressing the principal mandate of the Jewish community relations field, expressed in three interrelated goals: 1) To safeguard the rights of Jews here and around the world; 2) To dedicate ourselves to the safety and security of the state of Israel; and, 3) To protect, preserve and promote a just American society, one that is democratic and pluralistic, one that furthers harmonious interreligious, inter ethnic interracial and other intergroup relations.
COEJL and JCPA work together on an array of issues through JCPA’s Energy and Environment Committee and COEJL staffs JCPA’s newly developed Green Team. JCPA policy informs the development of COEJL’s policy positions.
National Religious Partnership for the Environment (NRPE)
COEJL is a member of the National Religious Partnership for the Environment (NRPE), a coalition of Jewish, Protestant, Catholic, and Evangelical Christian organizations that seek to encourage people of faith to weave values and programs of care for God’s creation throughout the entire fabric of religious life. NRPE integrates care for God’s creation throughout religious life, theology, worship, social teaching, education, congregations, and public policy initiatives.
COEJL’s NRPE partners are the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA (click here for NCC’s Eco-Justice Program), the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (click here for the related Catholic Coalition on Climate Change and Catholic Climate Covenant,) and the Evangelical Environmental Network.
NRPE’s four partner organizations have worked together to develop a “Religious Agenda on Poverty and Global Climate Change,” which reaffirms the faith community’s concern about protecting the world’s poor from climate change and policies that we take to address the problem.