Reducing Our Carbon Footprint

The General Synod of the Church of England (CofE) has set a target for it to become carbon ‘net zero’ by 2030. The first step is to calculate, as a baseline, the present carbon footprint and so it is developing a new tool for entering energy returns, calculating a carbon footprint and benchmarking carbon use for churches. This is currently being trialled in four dioceses, is intended to be available nationally soon and to remain so through the summer. It is for reporting 2019 energy use and is likely to work alongside the CofE’s “Statistics for Mission”. The National Statistics Team will estimate the CofE’s overall position based on the data entered, so the more parishes that enter good quality data the better. Other data that the CofE has on parish energy use, eg fro Parish Buying, will automatically feed through into this Energy Tracking Tool.

Areas to be covered include: buildings, land, churchyards, schools, vicarages and transport. Further details are given in the Environment section of the Property Team: Green Journey, Carbon Footprint Reduction

One optional scheme already used by parishes and dioceses is Green Journey which is provided by Green Energy Consulting, a leading firm of UK energy and environmental consultants. This began in 2015 and has the aim of reducing overall costs while improving green credentials and reducing any negative environmental impact. It may link up helpfully with the scheme being trialled above. Green Journey 

Also important is the calculation of our own personal carbon footprints and of any organisations in which we are involved. Here is one of the many websites which give information and advice: Carbon Footprinting Guide