Reducing Your Carbon Footprint: Resources and Ideas

Environmental Stewardship

(Adapted from Eco Faith and other sources)

**As you read this list, pick one or two items to focus on this month, and make a pledge with someone else to follow through!

Simple Ideas

  1. Walk or bike for short trips
  2. Turn heat down at night and during day when out (install a programmable thermostat if possible)
  3. Turn air-conditioning off or to a higher temperature
  4. Reduce water heater temperature
  5. Take shorter showers
  6. Think before buying
  7. Buy quality products that will last, not cheap products that rapidly end up in the landfill
  8. Buy less
  9. Turn off computer when not using
  10. Plug electronic equipment into power strips and turn power strips off when the equipment is not in use
  11. Hang laundry outside to dry by the sun and wind instead of using fossil fuels (or use drying rack)
  12. Reduce food waste
  13. Compost
  14. Eat less meat
  15. Choose glass over plastic, and recycle
  16. Buy in bulk when possible and use refillable containers (eg yogurt, dish washing soap)
  17. Carry a refillable water bottle and drink tap water; avoid bottled water (filter water if issues with taste)
  18. Carry small purchases without bags, and take reusable shopping bags to the store
  19. Take your own reusable mug to coffee shop, fast food restaurant, and work
  20. Take your own container to the bakery or carry-out food restaurant
  21. Avoid disposable razors, pens, utensils, cups, and dishes
  22. Use, wash and reuse cloth rags, hankies, and napkins
  23. Write letters to companies asking that they find alternatives to excessive packaging
  24. Stop junk mail, unwanted catalogues, and credit card offers
  25. Talk to other people about changes you’re making to normalize green practices
  26. Honour the Sabbath (rest like God did, and allow the Earth to rest too)
  27. Spend time in nature

Slightly More Complex Ideas

  1. Support local farmers and those who use sustainable farming methods
  2. Buy organic food and clothing made from natural and organic fabrics to decrease toxic chemicals in our ecosystem
  3. Use compact fluorescent lights or LEDs and turn them off when they are not needed and/or install motion sensors
  4. Insulate your home (if renting, cover windows with heavy curtains or film, seal cracks)
  5. Avoid wood, food, and coffee products that contribute to tropical forest destruction; buy fair trade when possible
  6. Make your own nontoxic and Earth-friendly cleaning products and store them in reusable containers
  7. Drive less and use public transportation more
  8. Do a book study or read books on environmental stewardship
  9. Be involved in environmental stewardship actions at your church

More Complex/Expensive Ideas

  1. Do an energy audit/assess your carbon footprint
  2. Install solar attic fans
  3. Install a solar hot water system
  4. Use dual or low flush toilets, low flow showerheads
  5. Drive a fuel-efficient vehicle
  6. Buy/upgrade to energy efficient appliances
  7. Upgrade to solar panels, geothermal, or other renewable energy sources
  8. Assess your finances for alignment with personal morals (eg. divest from fossil fuels)

Resources

Books and Book Study Suggestions

  • Eco Faith: Creating and sustaining green congregations by Charlene Hosenfeld
  • Green Church – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Rejoice! by Rebekah Simon-Peter
  • Green Church – 7 simple steps to Green Your Church by Rebekah Simon-Peter
  • Fostering Sustainable Behavior: Community-based social marketinghttp://www.cbsm.com/pages/guide/preface/

Understanding Carbon Footprint and Carbon Footprint Calculators

http://www.changeyourcorner.com/articles/034.php

http://www.carbonfootprint.com/calculator.aspx

http://offsets.greeningsacredspaces.org/

http://www.coolcongregations.org/start-up-kit/start-up-kit-for-congregations/25-steps/

http://shrinkthatfootprint.com/13-steps-carbon-footprint

http://cotap.org/reduce-carbon-footprint/

https://bravenewclimate.com/2008/08/29/top-10-ways-to-reduce-your-co2-emissions-footprint/

http://mashable.com/2013/10/22/reduce-carbon-footprint/#rFFw6JSjqiqF

http://www.davidsuzuki.org/what-you-can-do/reduce-your-carbon-footprint/four-places-to-cut-your-carbon/?gclid=CObX6OvwnNECFZa6wAodRK0ACg

Green Audits

http://greeningsacredspaces.net/support-sustainable-faith-properties/green-audit/

http://ecochurch.arocha.org.uk/eco-survey-non-saving-example/

http://www.eco-justice.org/assess.asp

Greening the Church

http://www.greenchurches.ca/

http://www.greenfaith.org/resource-center/spirit

http://www.greenfaith.org/resource-center/stewardship

http://www.eco-justice.org/Greening-Basics.asp

http://acen.anglicancommunion.org/resources.aspx

http://www.anglican.ca/publicwitness/creationmatters/

http://www.kairoscanada.org/what-we-do/ecological-justice/

http://acen.anglicancommunion.org/media/61022/climate_change_purposes_of_god_op_noah.pdf

Statements on the Environment

http://episcopaldigitalnetwork.com/ens/2014/04/25/canada-anglican-lutheran-leaders-issue-environmental-statement/

http://www.christiansandclimate.org/statement/

https://ctbi.org.uk/environment-links