Church of England should inspire change, 'not mimic societal norms' on climate crisis

By agency reporter
November 14, 2019

Green Christian has welcomed plans by the Church of England, announced last week, to “recognise the Climate Crisis and step up its action to safeguard God’s creation.”

The charity is seriously concerned, however, by the Environmental Working Group’s proposal that General Synod should support the Government’s carbon reduction of net zero carbon by 2050. It is particularly worrying that this is described as being “in line with UK Government policy” as if this provides due justification for the target.  

Deborah Tomkins, Co-Chair of Green Christian, said: “The Church of England should be setting an example of environmental responsibility to the nation, not merely supporting existing policy and practice. Christians ought to set the highest standard of ethical behaviour as an example to others. The 2050 target will dismay those in the Church who expect its leaders to inspire change rather than mimic societal norms.”

She indicated that Green Christian will campaign over the coming months for members of the General Synod to adopt a far more challenging target.

Tim Cooper, a Green Christian Trustee and Professor of Sustainable Design and Consumption at Nottingham Trent University, added: “Experts increasingly agree that the Government’s 2050 deadline is inappropriate. Institutions, regional authorities and opposition parties are increasingly advocating 2030 as a target  – and even this may be inadequate. The Working Group’s current proposal is weak and indefensible.”

* Read the proposals from the Environmental Working Group of the Church of England here

* Green Christian exists to encourage and inform Christians on green issues and to offer Christian insights to the wider environmental movement. The charity seeks to encourage all Christians in prayer, protest, campaigning and environmental witness, as well as living more gently with joy on the Earth.


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