Church adopts carbon reduction policy

The Methodist Church signed up to a series of carbon reductioncommitments at its annual Conference today.

The Conference, meeting in Portsmouth's Guildhall, confirmed apledge to reduce Church's carbon emissions by 80 per cent by 2050in line with Government targets after adopting resolutions set outin a carbon reduction report.

The Methodist Church in Britain has a carbon footprint of around120,000 tonnes of CO2 per annum for approximately 8,000 of itsbuildings. The annual energy bill to the Church and individualministers is about £19 million a year. Cutting the carbon footprinthas the potential to free up money that can be used formission.

From now on, Methodist Circuits will be asked to provide smartmeter devices to enable ministers to control their electricity use.Circuits will also be encouraged to fund Government sponsored smartdriver training for presbyters, deacons and lay employees whereappropriate.

The Church also plans to launch a carbon reduction service, whichwill save money through bulk energy purchases. The money saved canthen be used to fund further energy reduction purchases, leavingchurches with a smaller carbon footprint and lower energybills.

Triumph Ayo-Isegun, Projects Officer, said: "The proposals agreedtoday are only the first step for the Methodist Church. It will bea long journey with massive challenges but we are very optimisticthat the Methodist people will rise to these."

The Conference also directed Circuits to endeavour to use modeltrust money to put high standards of energy efficiency in place.Methodist Standing Orders will be amended so that energyperformance and energy efficiency requirements become mandatory forChurch buildings and manses. All local Methodist churches will beasked to sign up to the Hope in God's Future pledge now thatConference has adopted the report.