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Archbishop tells Church to help save the planet with green policies

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  • mtneuman@juno.com
    Archbishop tells Church to help save the planet with green policies By Robert Verkaik 03 February 2005 Global warming: scientists reveal timetable Archbishop
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 3, 2005
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      Archbishop tells Church to help save the planet with green policies
      By Robert Verkaik
      03 February 2005
      Global warming: scientists reveal timetable

      Archbishop tells Church to help save the planet with green policies

      The Church of England is embarking on a green revolution, rolling out an
      eco-friendly policy under which organic bread and wine will be served for
      Holy Communion, clergy will recycle waste products and fair trade
      products will be sold at f�tes.

      Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, will set out his vision
      of a greener world at a meeting of the General Synod of the Church of
      England later this month that will challenge Britain to tackle global
      warming.

      In a discussion document being circulated among Synod members, the Church
      of England says that the world's climate is close to a "tipping point".
      The Church warns: "The sudden changes that would occur in weather
      systems, the fertility of the soil, the water and the world of living
      creatures if this tipping point were reached could be devastating." It
      points out that even if "ecological devastation" is not on the horizon
      "it has to be realised that growth without limit has to be curtailed".

      The report, entitled Sharing God's Planet, argues: "Furthermore, the
      injustices spawned by massive growth already exist. Two-thirds of the
      world does not have enough to eat while the other third is trying to lose
      weight."

      Dr Williams will introduce the report that also backs the widespread
      claim that industrialisation has damaged the environment by global
      warming. He recommends that Christians adopt "sustainable consumption",
      recognising their duty "to celebrate and care for every part of God's
      creation".

      The Synod will debate the issue on 17 February, the day after the Kyoto
      protocol to reduce greenhouse gases comes into force. The Church is
      critical of countries such as the United States which have dragged their
      feet over the protocol.

      In a second discussion document on the environmental debate, the Synod is
      asked to recognise that Kyoto is not enough. "It has taken far too long
      to be ratified as each country fights for its own interests (the US is
      notable among countries which have declined to sign); its targets fall
      very far short of what is necessary."

      At the same time, Christians will be asked to praise the work of the Body
      Shop which is described as a "brave exception" for getting people to
      consider the ethics of their shopping choices.

      The Synod will also be asked to support the principle of introducing a
      system of quotas for CO2 emissions that take account of a country's size
      of population rather than its industrial strength.

      But the Church of England will begin its own campaign by introducing
      eco-friendly policies in its churches. Among practical ideas for local
      churches are schemes such as recycling, car pooling and selling fairly
      traded products at church f�tes. Clergy will also be encouraged to use
      natural materials in worship such as organic bread and wine. In his
      foreword to Sharing God's Planet, Dr Williams calls on each parish to
      undertake an "ecological audit". He adds: "Such local internal responses
      are vital if our voice as a church is to have integrity."

      The Synod has not debated the environment since 1992 and the only other
      debate took place in 1986. The discussion document adds: "A Synod debate
      on the environment is timely. There is increasing awareness of the urgent
      need to address the developing ecological crisis. It is politically
      opportune as one of the Government's declared priorities for its current
      presidency of the G8 is climate change and that concern will be carried
      into its priorities for its chairing of the European Union."
      http://news.independent.co.uk/uk/environment/story.jsp?story=607235
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