Bishop Of Top Coal State Calls The Pope’s Climate Encyclical A “Call To Action”


Dan Boyce

Bishop Paul Etienne during Sunday Mass recently at Saint Mary's Cathedral in Cheyenne, WY.

Bishop Paul Etienne during Sunday Mass at Saint Mary’s Cathedral in Cheyenne, Wyo.

Dan Boyce

Pope Francis made international headlines last month by calling on the world to proactively address human-caused climate change.

The document, a so-called encyclical, is one of the most important statements a pope can issue.

Shortly after its release, Inside Energy reporter Dan Boyce sat down with Paul Etienne, Catholic Bishop of Cheyenne.

His diocese, or jurisdiction, covers the entire state of Wyoming, the nation’s largest coal producer.

In this interview, Etienne says the encyclical is an explicit call to action, for Wyoming’s faithful and non-faithful alike.

“I know this document is going to disturb many people in this state, because it is very much an energy-driven state. But, I think it’s premature for people to be alarmed that he’s calling for immediate change or to say what we’re doing is sinful.”

-Bishop Paul Etienne

What’s Next:  


  • Learn more about what’s at stake for coal in this country: Our recent The Future of Coal series was produced in collaboration with Allegheny Front and West Virginia Public Media.