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Saving Creation-The Diocese of Leeds strategy to reach net zero by 2030.


Some of you will know that in February 2020,the Church of England adopted an ambitious target to reach net zero emissions by 2030. 

The Diocese of Leeds are at the forefront of acting on this and it is a key part of the Diosesan Strategy strongly endorsed by Bishop Nick in the context of loving, living and learning.

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  • He sets out that reducing our carbon usage is an act of love . We share a “common home” on the earth and the resources are not limitless. Loving our neighbours as ourselves calls us to reduce our carbon usage as individuals and as a church.

  • Facing up to the reality of climate change requires us to live differently; to ask difficult questions and consider our priorities. Achieving net zero by 2030 communicates to the world and to ourselves who it is we believe in.

  • In aiming for net zero by 2030, we are seeking to be both bold and courageous. It will be a costly journey . Let us seek to support one another to learn, grow and discover more about God, his mission and the role of the church in the 21st Century.


The Diocesan website has lots of good information (click here) and all parishes and deanearies are being asked to work on their net zero strategy. The Church of England has decided to start by only counting its Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions for the commitment to be carbon net zero by 2030 . That means carbon dioxide produced from directly burning fossil fuels (gas/oil for heating and petrol/diesel used for church business travel) and carbon emitted from using fossil fuels to generate electricity. 


So the 6 steps to net zero are set out as:

  1. Measure and monitor: use of the energy foot printing tool and report to the APCM

  2. Plan and prepare: checklist and template

  3. Essential energy actions: cut back on energy use and use a 100% renewable tariff

  4. Essential travel actions: move to electric cars, charged with renewable energy

  5. Carbon offsetting: such as tree planting for remaining emissions.

  6. Stepping out and up: celebrate what you are achieving.

Responsible Investment

The Church Commissioners for England aim to be at the forefront of responsible investment, which has been core to our approach for decades. To read more about this, visit their website.

Here at St John's 

In 2019, we gained our Bronze Eco Church award so are doing lots of good things towards this already but we are keen to involve more people and we could do with a small group to work on this together to achieve a silver or gold award. If you would like to get involved, please contact the parish office.


The Eco church group - Can you help?

The eco church group with input from our young people are keen to start growing fruit and veg in the churchyard.  Can you help by donating:

  • Water butt (or two) to capture water from the parish room roof plus expertise on installation;

  • Large pots for growing veg;

  • Donating and/or giving guidance on an apple tree(s) to plant which could be our Jubilee tree.

  • Your time to help the project?


The young people are also planning to make a bee/bug hotel and we are planning nature trails for the churchyard that can be undertaken at any time.


Will you have spare seasonal fruit that might go to waste? If so please bring along to church and the team who bake for the bake sales could put to good use. 


On the wider front, I am sure we are all becoming aware for the climate emergency, which can seem overwhelming. All of us can do some small things to make a difference. The Eco church scheme, for which we have a bronze award, has a range of ideas and we would like to encourage more involvement so that we can become a silver or gold eco church. So we want to introduce the idea of climate pledges: this could be more walking /less car use; clothes/toy swops. Watch out for further details and contact us if you are interested in getting involved.


Eco Tip - Ditch disposables. Single-use plastic and single-use styrofoam are sourced from fossil fuels and contribute to climate change. Both materials are also known to contain carcinogens that are harmful to human health; this is particularly true when they are used for hot liquids or food, or microwaved. In a season of picnics and busyness, try to remember to ‘BYOC’ (Bring Your Own Container or Cutlery) for your summer snacks instead of buying disposable items. Think reusable lunch boxes or beeswax wraps. Glass jars are another good option as they are non-toxic, don’t hold on to grease or food smells, and can hold liquids well too (but do mind their temperature with hot liquids).


For  more info on Eco church  see Sally, Matthew, Catherine and Marilyn or make contact via the Parish office or the contact us page.

How green is your money?

If your money isn’t in a sock under your bed, it is very likely being used to fund climate breakdown. Thanks to these new websites, it is now really easy to check and to make your money work for good.


Eco Church Pledges

Concerned about the climate emergency and not sure what to do?  How about pledging to take one action in the next two months that will make a difference? If you click this link: Pledge form there are ideas for what you can do and a chance to sign up.  Please do join St John's in tackling the climate crisis.

For further resources see: A Rocha UK's Wild Christian scheme - a community of families and individuals exploring the connections between our Christian faith, the natural environment, and how we live.

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