Congregations, community service agencies, aged care facilities, schools and the central offices of the Uniting Church in Tasmania and Victoria are setting a strong community example with the Synod’s decision to reduce gas emissions by at least 20% by 2020.
The goal of a 20% reduction was determined by the Property Board Committee after an audit was conducted on the Synod’s energy consumption.
The first step in reducing emissions will be to appoint a management committee which will work to identify:
- consistent approaches to the measurement of greenhouse gas emissions
- opportunities for reducing greenhouse gas emissions
- securing funding options to carry out this work
- reporting progress of reduction to the Synod every three years
Questions Asked And Answered
Questions were raised regarding what 20% actually meant, given that this might be too hard to achieve, and that some congregations and schools are already making a large effort without the added pressure of reaching that benchmark.
Should the process be monitored according to individual departments and not generalised across the whole Synod of Victoria and Tasmania?
It was explained that it was important for the Synod as a whole to be collaborative in this goal as the government sees the Church as a whole, and it was also agreed that some areas shouldn’t be pressured to do even more, so those organisations would be consulted on a case-by-case basis.
In discussing the benchmark of 20%, Cath James explained they’d found that 15% was quite achievable, so they wanted to challenge the church and then encourage the government to do the same.
Another concern was whether the Board of Mission and Resourcing (BOMAR) was going to be funding the whole initiative. No, the Board wouldn’t be the sole source of funding.
“Part of the committee’s job will be to establish sources of funding, which there are many of including government ones.” said Executive Director, Sebert Ruddock.
Reducing Synod Costs
It was also noted that the reduction in carbon emissions would reduce costs in general for the Synod.
There was overall consensus, with the exception of one man who felt costs in general should be reduced, not just greenhouse gas emissions. He agreed that his voice had been heard and the proposal was passed.
For More Info
Please contact Adrian Pyle, Director: Relationships Innovation
t (03) 9251 5253 | f (03) 9251 5491 | m 0408 550 491
What an excellent model for our many levels of government