Luther professor James Martin-Schramm to speak at IRAS energy conference July 24-31

Feb. 22, 2010

James Martin-Schramm, Luther College professor of religion, will speak at the conference “The Energy Transition: Religious, and Cultural Perspectives” July 24-31 in New Hampshire.

The conference will explore aspects of the world’s energy transition. The week’s agenda begins with the science and technology of energy, shifts to ethical issues, and ends with religious and cultural perspectives on energy policy.   

Engineers, scientists, ethicists and theologians will discuss ethical and religious perspectives that can be used to guide future energy choices, which in turn, might challenge ethical and religious perspectives.

The conference will be held on Star Island, off the coast of Portsmouth, N.H.

Martin-Schramm’s presentation will focus on ethical resources that Christian communities have developed over the last 40 years to grapple with the nexus between social justice and environmental issues.

The July assembly will be the 56th annual conference of the Institute on Religion in an Age of Science (IRAS). IRAS, a non-denominational, independent society, is one of the oldest organizations facilitating dialogue on cutting-edge issues in the field of religion and science.

See further details about the conference at

Martin-Schramm has served as research chair of the Luther College Center for Ethics and Public Life since 2008. 

A member of the Luther faculty since 1993, he holds the doctoral degree in Christian ethics and the master’s degree in philosophy from Union Theological Seminary in New York City, the master of divinity degree from Luther Northwestern Theological Seminary and the bachelor of arts degree from Pacific Lutheran University.   

Professor Martin-Schramm is coordinator of Luther College’s wind-turbine project, which is projected to generate each year about a third of the electrical energy consumed on the Luther campus.  He has secured grants and guaranteed loans of nearly $2 million to advance Luther College’s initiatives to reduce the college’s greenhouse gases emissions and its carbon footprint.

The author of “Climate Justice: Ethics, Energy, and Public Policy” (Fortress Press, 2010), “Christian Environmental Ethics: A Case-Method Approach” co-authored with Robert L. Stivers (Orbis Books, 2003), “Population Perils and the Churches’ Response” (Geneva: World Council of Churches Publications, 1997), and numerous book chapters, journal articles and abstracts, Martin-Schramm is the lead author of “The Power to Change: U.S. Energy Policy and Global Warming,” commissioned by the Advisory Committee on Social Witness Policy, Presbyterian Church (USA) in 2007.

He is a frequent speaker and presenter on environmental ethics and population issues, including presentations at the International Biomass 2008 Conference and Trade Show in Minneapolis and Windpower 2007—the annual meeting of the American Wind Energy Association in Los Angeles.

Jim Martin-Schramm