General Convention affirms series of environment, creation care measures

By ENS staff
Posted Jul 11, 2022

[Episcopal News Service –Baltimore, Maryland] Deputies on July 11 concurred with bishops, adopting a series of environmental resolutions put forward by the Environmental Stewardship and Care of Creation Committee, including support of A020 to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

In other actions deputies adopted:

An amended Resolution A087 Net Carbon Neutrality by 2030, committing the church to a goal of net carbon neutrality in its operations and the work of staff, standing commissions, interim bodies and General Convention by 2030, through reducing emissions from travel, energy use, increasing energy efficiency in buildings, and purchasing offsets from investigated, responsible and ethical partners. The resolution also encourages dioceses, churches and institutions to pursue their own goal of net carbon neutrality by 2030 through similar efforts.

An amended Resolution A088, to “Commit to the Pressing Work of Addressing Global Climate Change and Environmental Justice,” recommitting the church to the work of previous conventions and affirming the decision of the federal government to rejoin the Paris Climate Agreement and encouraging the Washington D.C.-based Office of Government Relations and the Episcopal Public Policy Network to advocate for legislation and other public policies addressing climate change, among the marginalized, Indigenous and frontline communities, among others.

An amended C015 Carbon Sequestration creates an internal carbon offset program, directing Executive Council’s Economic Justice Loan Committee, in consultation with others, to implement a positive investment strategy to fund methods of capturing and storing greenhouse gases through sustainable nature-based, land management solutions such as afforestation and regenerative agricultural practices, and be it further support for the Communion Forest Initiative, to be launched at the Lambeth Conference 2022, to plant trees, practice reforestation and regenerative agriculture, protect forests and other plant communities across the Communion.

C016 – Climate change – establish and coordinate shareholder investment strategies around carbon-intensive lending, identifying banks and financial lending institutions that are carbon-intensive lenders and initiative the appropriate shareholder strategy with these institutions to slow global warming.

D027, encouraging greater utilization of virtual meetings in church gatherings.

That this 80th General Convention encourages greater utilization of virtual; and be it further

D064 – endorse and encourage Green Deal Legislation amended, advocating for the federal government’s efforts to address environmental and ecological issues, and call upon officials and members to also advocate for regulation of major polluting industries and to take concrete actions to reduce the effects of climate change.