London Diocesan House slashes carbon footprint
The Diocese of London’s office, in Causton Street London SW1, has made huge progress on the road to eliminating its carbon footprint, achieving a staggering 96 percent reduction in net greenhouse gas emissions, between 2005 and 2012.
By adopting careful housekeeping practices, such as switching off computers when not in use and controlling the temperature of heating radiators, the building’s gross emissions from fuel and power fell from 207.2 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) in 2005 to 158.1 tonnes in 2012.
After allowing for the purchase of renewable electricity from a green energy supplier, and concentrating staff into less floor space, the organisation has reduced its net carbon footprint even further, down to a mere 8.5 tonnes of CO2!
The Diocese’s efforts are part of the national Shrinking the Footprint campaign to reduce our energy use and carbon emissions, tackle climate change and care for our natural environment which is God’s creation.
By sponsoring the Woodland Trust’s new Heartwood Forest annually with the cost of 250m2 of new trees – typically that’s 40 new trees planted each year, with all the biodiversity that this will generate – the office’s net carbon footprint from fuel and power is now set to be entirely eliminated. By planting 40 trees, one for each day in Lent, the diocesan office goes net carbon neutral in Lent 2014.
The Diocese’s office is just one building. There are 480 churches in London, and they are playing the major part. Already, these churches have cut their energy use by 21.7 percent, and their carbon emissions by 14.9 percent. At the same time, parsonage houses are undergoing regular energy surveys and economical upgrades.
Brian Cuthbertson, Head of Environment and Sustainability said:
"I am thrilled that the Diocese can now announce its office has gone net carbon neutral, promoting tree planting and biodiversity into the bargain. There is so much more we can do to make our organisation more environmentally efficient and sensitive. This is a major step along the way, inspiring us to continuing efforts!"
(Image: Pastures new for Heartwood Forest, sponsored in part by the Diocese of London.)