Today, there are a vast number of environmental problems, all with unique causes. Some people have said that Christianity is one of the primary causes of the degradation of the environment.
Lynn White has said that the modern destruction of the environment can be
attributed to Christianity. The Biblical belief that nature, seen as inferior to people, can be controlled by man, has brought a lack of respect for the sacredness of the environment, according to White.
White would also argue that Christianity is greatly responsible for the advent of Western science and technology. Modern technology has clearly been one of the main sources of environmental difficulties.
The Judeo-Christian notion of nature is that it is not sacred like
God. Man, however, is believed by this group to be made in God's image, and can therefore shape nature as God would.
There are some who would disagree with this application of Christianity. Those who believe in "stewardship" would say that people must respect and not destroy nature, not overexploit natural resources, and allow other animals to live in nature as well.
Many important theological thinkers would agree with this version of Christianity. Calvin said that man
is the steward of God's earth, and has no right to exploit and destroy it. Also, St. Thomas Aquinas said that man had some responsibility towards animals.
Christianity also favors the environment in some respects. To the benefit of the environment, the religion encourages caring for other people, including those of the future, and some level of respect for the environment.
Of God and His Creatures, by Saint Thomas Aquinas