Christian Aid has responded to the announcement from the Bishop of Salisbury, Nick Holtam, that the Church of England plans to make its 40,000 church buildings carbon neutral by 2045.
Patrick Watt, Director of Policy and Public Affairs at Christian Aid, said: “It’s a welcome first step to see the Church committing to make its buildings carbon neutral by 2045. However, the National Farmers Union plans for its entire sector to be net zero by 2040, and the UK water industry by 2030. Currently the Church of England has plans to be net zero by no sooner than 2050, the same date as the UK as a whole.
“On matters of morality and injustice, the Church should be at the forefront, modelling a prophetic vision that gives hope to the poor and voiceless. People suffering at the hands of the climate crisis in the global south, including millions of Christian sisters and brothers, need institutions in the rich world to move rapidly to cut emissions.
“The year of the Lambeth Conference, when Anglican bishops from across the globe meet, would be a good time to announce the Church will commit not just its buildings, but its entire operation, including investments and landholdings, will go net zero, with a focus on avoiding emissions, by at least 2045.”