If you hire inflatable play equipment, including bouncy castles, you must make sure it is safe for others to use.
Learn how greener churches can protect the earth, reduce outgoings and encourage a more sustainable future for their communities.
Churches and communities can do a great deal to contribute to a greener future, and there are lots of initiatives already in place. Recently, we were inspired by Bath Abbey’s Footprint Project. The Abbey is well-placed to take advantage of their local resources and will heat the church using hot water that flows underground from the natural springs under the city.
Single-use plastics such as cutlery and crockery can be easily avoided by using traditional washable items such as china plates and metal cutlery when serving food and drinks at your church. However, this isn’t always possible, for example while on the move, so disposable items made of materials such as bamboo and paper can be good alternatives.
Lent is an excellent time to encourage your congregation to make small changes that help to protect the earth. Exploring alternatives to the daily routine can help break habits that lead to long-term positive changes. Carbon fasting suggestions include:
Bees are essential to the pollination of flowers. According to Country File, to make one pound of honey, bees fly over 55,000 miles. You can create a bee-friendly rest-stop at your church by:
Are there ways you could encourage your congregation and other church users to cycle? Introducing areas where bikes can be stored safely at the church is a great start. You could also create a map of cycle routes to the church for your website.
Your church should be well-lit to help reduce the risk of accidents such as slips and trips occurring. Although they cost more initially, light-emitting diodes (LEDs) use less energy than traditional bulbs and therefore have less impact on the environment. You can visit the Parish Buying website to learn more and benefit from negotiated rates from trusted church suppliers
Solar panels only require daylight rather than direct sunlight, so even on a cloudy day, they can generate electricity. For information about safe installation, our risk management guidance on solar panels.
Following an audit of 200 churches in 2013, the Church of England has encouraged 5,500 churches to switch to energy suppliers that only put electricity into the national grid from 100% renewable sources.
Ecochurch offers a free online survey so you can gain an understanding of how eco-friendly your church is and how to improve. Visit the Ecochurch website.
Look for inspiration in the success of other churches. Allchurches Trust recently helped to fund a project by Cloudesley. They looked at 24 churches and identified changes they could cut their utility bills and help the environment. Cloudesley has produced a blog for Allchurches Trust where you can discover what they have learned from the project and some of the big savings they achieved.