Non-profit

Young Evangelicals for Climate Action (YECA)

Website:

www.yecaction.org

Location:

Indianapolis, IN

Tax ID:

23-2827214

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2017):

Revenue: $629,975
Expenses: $582,456
Assets: $25,350

Formation:

2012

Project of:

Evangelical Environmental Network

Type:

Activist Youth Group of Environmentalist Advocacy Organization Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN)

Young Evangelicals for Climate Action (YECA) is an evangelical Christian environmental advocacy group and the youth wing of the Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN), which advocates left-leaning environmentalist messages to right-leaning Christians. EEN and YECA are in part funded by liberal foundations, including the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Energy Foundation, and Marisla Foundation. [1]

YECA supports legislation that would establish “carbon pricing” fees that would pay dividends to all citizens and illegal aliens in the US. The group creates and distributes petitions to end the use of all fossil fuels and the implementation of 100% solar, wind, and geo-thermal sources in US domestic energy production. The group funds several small international projects that provide funding for forestry in other nations to “off-set” carbon emissions in the US. Many of the resources recommended by this group come from left-of-center environmentalist groups such as  350.org and the National Center for the Public Interest (NCPI). [2]

YECA’s idea of diversity embraces the language and approach of left-leaning identity politics. The YECA’s diversity statement claims that “We recognize that in the history of the United States and the world, false divisions have been fabricated which have enabled and encouraged the subjugation, injury, and disenfranchisement of entire groups of people, particularly women and people of color.” [3] The group then goes on to claim that the US’s “status quo of racial, ethnic, and gender exclusion is systemic and that actions to ameliorate the injustice of exclusion must be proactive and countercultural.” [4] The group commits to diversity through “racial, ethnic, class, ability, and gender backgrounds.” [5]

Founding and History

Young Evangelicals for Climate Action (YECA) claims that their membership consists of young evangelicals who support action against climate change because they feel that it’s perspective effects will harm “God’s creation here in the United States and around the world.” [6]

YECA is the youth wing of the Evangelical Environmental Network (EEN), which advocates left-leaning messages to right-leaning Christians. EEN is funded by liberal foundations, including the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Energy Foundation, and Marisla Foundation. [7]

The YECA’s mission is to advocate for actions to reverse climate because they see it as an obligation of their interpretation of Christianity. The group was founded in 2012 at a planning retreat of the EEN held in Washington, D.C. It seeks to recruit young evangelical Christians to their climate agenda, then influence older and more senior evangelical leaders to support YECA’s cause, and to influence US political leaders in support of the group’s climate policies. [8]

Environmentalism

“Creation Care” and its precepts feature prominently on the Young Evangelicals for Climate Action and Evangelical Environmental Network websites and is the main ideological argument of both groups environmentalist views. “Creation Care” was first defined in October 2010 by over 4,000 Christian leaders from 198 countries at a conference in Cape Town, South Africa as part of the Third Lausanne Congress. “Creation care is thus a gospel issue within the Lordship of Christ. Such love for God’s creation demands that we repent of our part in the destruction, waste and pollution of the earth’s resources and our collusion in the toxic idolatry of consumerism. Instead, we commit ourselves to urgent and prophetic ecological responsibility.” [9]

Alongside “Creation Care” the YECA advocates for many left-of-center climate-based policies and cites references from groups such as 350.org and the National Center for the Public Interest (NCPI). [10] The news feed of the YECA has articles that state “Young Evangelicals Support Principles of Green New Deal; Call for Bipartisan Legislation to Enact Them” in which Biblical scripture is used to justify aspects of the Green New Deal. [11]

Messages in support of “climate strikes” and support for the Paris Climate Agreement feature widely on the YECA’s blog, website, and social media feeds. Many other progressive and liberal ideas can be found all over YECA’s website, such as references to class struggle, gender identity, racial justice, and support for illegal immigrants. [12] The YECA’s Twitter feed proclaims support for Swedish environmentalist Greta Thunberg and videos of the group conducting “die-in” protests in front of the White House in January 2020. [13]

Structure

Young Evangelicals for Climate Action is listed as a project of the Evangelical Environmental Network on IRS documents; it is not a separate entity from the EEN and receives all its funds from the parent group. YECA’s steering committee are the main leaders of the group, consisting of organizers and activists who direct YECA’s actions, strategy, and ideology. [14]  This group provides $2,000 annually to Climate Leadership Fellows, who are evangelical Christian undergraduate students that are provided funds to conduct activism, develop future leaders in the group,  and to recruit new members. [15] The YECA’s senior advisors are former YECA activist, professors, non-profit staff, and religious leaders that provide their guidance to the YECA’s steering committee and project leaders. [16]

Projects

Leaders Program

This program identifies prospective leaders and connects them to the Young Evangelicals for Climate Action staff to begin training as an activist leader. The group trains their activist to “promote a biblical understanding of the climate crisis.” [17] This program teaches activists about two main subjects the “broader movement of creation care” and “the theological and scientific support for creation care and climate action.” [18] Other general topics and skills taught are organizing, mobilization, community building, and leadership development. The leaders program is the primary means of recruiting YECA members; its expectations are that activist “be an active and committed Christian, and support the mission of Y.E.C.A.,” complete the training, and coordinate with the group’s staff regularly. [19]

International Projects

In 2015 the YECA funded the Congo Initiative, a Christian bilingual university in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The YECA’s Climate Stewards is a program to fund forestry projects in Ghana and Mexico. Additionally, it provides fuel-efficient cookstoves, water filters, and solar lights to Christians in Kenya. These programs are designed to make up for or “off-set” carbon emissions produced in the US. [20]

Diversity Statement

Young Evangelicals for Climate Action rhetoric embraces left-wing identity politics and seems based on far-left ideology. The YECA’s diversity statement claims that “We recognize that in the history of the United States and the world, false divisions have been fabricated which have enabled and encouraged the subjugation, injury, and disenfranchisement of entire groups of people, particularly women and people of color.” [21] The diversity statement then goes on to claim that privileged individuals in the US create agendas that negatively affect poor and minority groups. The group supports the “ministry of reconciliation” in which “the status quo of racial, ethnic, and gender exclusion is systemic and that actions to ameliorate the injustice of exclusion must be proactive and countercultural.” [22] To correct what the YECA sees wrong with the United States of America, the group commits to diversity through “racial, ethnic, class, ability, and gender backgrounds. ” [23]

Activism

Young Evangelicals for Climate Action’s Faithful Action Pledge is the first step in joining YECA and asks those signatories to commit to helping to enact the group’s policies to halt climate change. [24]

YECA’s Ohio Clean Energy Petition calls on evangelical Christians to push their elected representatives to stop the production and use of fossil fuels for alternative energy sources, with the exception of nuclear energy. [25]

The YECA supported a bill, Energy Innovation, and Carbon Dividend Act (H.R. 763), that would have created a carbon pricing scheme. The fees imposed by this scheme would have been $15/per ton of carbon in 2018 and add $10/per ton ever year after 2019. The funds from these fees were to be evenly distributed to all Americans via a dividend check. This law supported a border adjustment for ten years, which would have been a de-facto tariff on imports and under the auspices of the Environmental Protection Agency. Additionally, the group claims that illegal immigrants inside the US (termed “those without social security numbers or TINs”) should receive the carbon pricing dividend checks alongside US citizens. [26]

References

  1. “Millions spent to sell evangelicals on ‘climate change’” OneNewsNow.com. June 21, 2015. Accessed June 13, 2017. https://www.onenewsnow.com/church/2015/06/21/millions-spent-to-sell-evangelicals-on-climate-change. ^
  2. “Climate Change Economics.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/climate_change_economics. ^
  3. “Commitment to Diversity Statement.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/commitment_to_diversity. ^
  4. “Commitment to Diversity Statement.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/commitment_to_diversity. ^
  5. “Commitment to Diversity Statement.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/commitment_to_diversity. ^
  6. “What We Do.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/what_we_do. ^
  7. “Millions spent to sell evangelicals on ‘climate change’” OneNewsNow.com. June 21, 2015. Accessed June 13, 2017. https://www.onenewsnow.com/church/2015/06/21/millions-spent-to-sell-evangelicals-on-climate-change. ^
  8. “What We Do.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/what_we_do. ^
  9. “The Cape Town Commitment.” Lausanne Movement, January 29, 2020. https://www.lausanne.org/content/ctc/ctcommitment. ^
  10. “Climate Change Economics.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/climate_change_economics. ^
  11. Goebel, Tori. “Young Evangelicals Support Principles of Green New Deal; Call for Bipartisan Legislation to Enact Them.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/gndprinciples. ^
  12. “News.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/blog. ^
  13. Action, Young Evangelicals for Climate. “Young Evangelicals for Climate Action (@YECAction).” Twitter. Twitter, August 16, 2018. https://twitter.com/YECAction?ref_src=twsrc^google|twcamp^serp|twgr^author. ^
  14. “Steering Committee.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/steering_committee. ^
  15. “Climate Leadership Fellows.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/climate_leadership_fellows. ^
  16. “Senior Advisors.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/senior_advisors. ^
  17. “Project Leaders Program.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/project_leaders_program. ^
  18. “Project Leaders Program.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/project_leaders_program. ^
  19. “Project Leaders Program.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/project_leaders_program. ^
  20. “Climate Stewards.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/climate_stewards. ^
  21. “Commitment to Diversity Statement.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/commitment_to_diversity. ^
  22. “Commitment to Diversity Statement.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/commitment_to_diversity. ^
  23. “Commitment to Diversity Statement.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/commitment_to_diversity. ^
  24. “Take the Faithful Action Pledge.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/faithfulactionpledge. ^
  25. “Ohio Clean Energy Petition.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/ohiopetition. ^
  26. “Federal Advocacy.” Young Evangelicals for Climate Action. Accessed February 1, 2020. https://www.yecaction.org/federal_advocacy#/30/. ^
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: November 1, 2004

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2017 Dec Form 990 $629,975 $582,456 $25,350 $16,393 N $629,768 $0 $0 $134,792 PDF
    2016 Dec Form 990 $497,026 $621,186 $27,759 $66,120 N $496,962 $0 $59 $101,598 PDF
    2015 Dec Form 990 $778,678 $669,358 $105,715 $19,916 N $778,676 $0 $2 $118,938 PDF
    2014 Dec Form 990 $948,968 $957,054 $12,883 $36,404 N $948,838 $122 $8 $126,090 PDF
    2013 Dec Form 990 $531,470 $547,010 $5,126 $20,561 N $530,704 $744 $22 $109,348 PDF
    2012 Dec Form 990 $848,769 $897,763 $12,955 $12,850 N $848,213 $535 $21 $86,769 PDF
    2011 Dec Form 990 $631,255 $783,007 $85,710 $36,611 N $628,946 $2,228 $81 $82,492 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Young Evangelicals for Climate Action (YECA)

    24 E FRANKLIN ST
    Indianapolis, IN 17349-9506