Bishops urge carbon reduction for Lent

The most common things to give up for Lent are probably chocolate and alcohol, but the Church of England bishops of London and Liverpool are urging the public to cut their carbon instead

Bishop of London Dr Richard Chartres and Bishop of Liverpool James Jones have joined with aid agency Tearfund to encourage people to reduce their carbon footprint over the next 40 days. The call comes as a survey for Tearfund reveals that three out of five adults are willing to take energy-saving action in Lent.

The bishops want people to begin the Carbon Fast by removing a lightbulb from a prominent place at home and living without it for the whole of Lent. They then want people to replace it with an energy-saving bulb which will save 60kg of CO2 a year.

The Carbon Fast also involves a simple energy saving action each day, including avoiding plastic bags, giving the dishwasher a day off, insulating the hot water tank, checking the house for drafts and buying draft excluders.

The bishops and Tearfund are launching the Carbon Fast because they say there is an urgent need to cut emissions and protect poor communities who are already being affected by climate change - and will be the worst hit in the future.

The drive is also being backed by church leaders and scientists including the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, and Sir John Houghton, former chief executive of the Met Office and first chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change scientific assessment.

Image: The Bishop of London, Dr Richard Chartres

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