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General Synod sets 2030 Net Zero carbon target

by Michael Ford last modified 24 Feb, 2020 04:18 PM

The Church of England’s General Synod has set new targets for all parts of the church to work to become carbon ‘net zero’ by 2030.

General Synod sets 2030 Net Zero carbon target

Bishop Nicholas speaks at General Synod

Members voted in favour of a revised date encouraging all parts of the Church of England to take action and ramp-up efforts to reduce emissions.

View footage here

A motion called for urgent steps to examine requirements to reach the new target, and draw up an action plan.

An amendment introduced a more ambitious target date of 2030, fifteen years ahead of the original proposal.

The motion follows the launch of the Church of England’s first ever Green Lent (#LiveLent) campaign for 2020, featuring 40 days of prayers and actions to encourage care for God’s Creation.

The Church of England has also announced an appliance-style footprinting tool for parishes to calculate their carbon footprint.

Following the debate, the Bishop of Salisbury, the Church of England’s lead bishop for the Environment said:

“Synod has set an ambitious target for the whole Church of England to respond to the urgency of the Climate Crisis.

“To reach Synod’s target of 2030 we will each need to hear this as an urgent call to action, but I am encouraged by the statement of intent this makes across the Church, and wider society about our determination to tackle Climate Change, and safeguard God’s creation.

“This is a social justice issue, which affects the world’s poorest soonest and most severely, and if the Church is to hold others to account, we have to get our own house in order.

“There is no serious doubt that climate change is happening, and that people are causing it, so it is very encouraging that Synod is grappling with the most urgent issues of our time.”

Introducing the debate Bishop Nicholas had said:

"There is a climate emergency. It is a crisis for God’s creation, and a fundamental injustice. It has raised big questions from young people about whether we really care and about intergenerational fairness. It raises big questions about climate justice as well as about our creativity and spirituality in relation to God and the earth."

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