Bishop James has joined forces with Tearfund and Eco-friendly school St Francis of Assisi Academy to encourage people to take part in the Carbon Fast this Lent.
The Carbon Fast is a 40-day journey through Lent towards a lighter carbon footprint, with simple energy-saving actions each day. The average emissions saving from doing the whole Fast is approximately 1.400kg CO2e per household. That’s equivalent to one return flight to New York, with enough emissions ‘left over’ for 70 cheeseburgers.
Pupils and staff from St Francis of Assisi Academy will be taking part in the Fast. The school is the only Specialist School in the UK with Environment as its specialism.
Environmental features include rainwater harvesting tanks, for toilet flushing and solar water heating. The solar atrium, made of a special transparent plastic, provides free natural heat to the buildings and green roofs for insulation and encourages biodiversity.
Vice Principal Steve McElroy said: “The buildings have been designed to teach about the environment, and we use the buildings in lessons. The Carbon Fast is very important to us as a school because it connects our Christian responsibility with our specialism.”
While abstaining from chocolate and alcohol are popular choices during this traditional time of fasting, the Carbon Fast provides a sustainable alternative to ditching the usual suspects.
Actions include having a meat-free Monday, a technology-free day and shrinking your consumer appetite, by thinking about whether you need it - or want it! An action that’s pertinent during tough economic times.
The Bishop of Liverpool Rt Rev James Jones, who first had the idea for the fast, said:
“Every year more people and churches choose to fast from carbon in Lent. This year, we are encouraging people to share some of the daily actions with others as well as doing them at home.
“Reducing our carbon emissions is a matter of climate justice, as our poorest neighbours in Africa, Asia, South America and other parts of the world are hardest hit by a changing climate.”