The Church of England has a target of becoming carbon neutral by 2030, and we at St. George's believe that we can smash that and get there in two years! In normal times our gas produced 12 tonnes CO2, and our electric produced 5 tonnes. But we have plans that will eliminate our footprint and even go beyond, as described below. We are actively seeking the funds to make these plans happen; our children and children’s children deserve it.
St George's have been awarded a ’Green Shoots’ grant for solar panels on the church roof
We are delighted that the Warwickshire County Council Green Shoots team are supporting our proposal to generate 24MWh per year by putting solar panels on the church roof and have awarded us £23,000 towards the cost. We have to find the rest of the money needed, around £7000 more. The electricity generated will save over 6 tonnes of CO2 every year, protecting an area the size of 28 football pitches from global warming. We are now confirming that the roof is strong enough, that the local grid is OK, and that all permissions are obtained, and we plan to have the panels installed ready for next year’s sunshine.
Other Actions St. George's Environment Group are continually investigating ways to cut down on CO2 emissions. If you have any ideas as to how we could do more, please contact us Other actions planned are:-
Changing our fluorescent lights to LED: We have nearly 100 fluorescent tubes in the church hall. Changing these to high efficiency LEDs should save around 0.3 tonnes of CO2 per year.
Heat pumps for the church: We are investigating changing the church heaters from gas heaters to air source heat pump heating. That could save nearly 80% of the energy usage for heating. The 12 tonnes CO2 from the gas used per year in a typical year would reduce to 2.5 tonnes, and that would become zero with renewable electricity. We will be looking to find the funds to do this from grants and donations.
Reducing mowing and wildflower areas: We are leaving the grass to grow a bit longer, and as well as letting the wildflowers grow in the longer grass, we are seeding other areas with wildflowers.
Changing to a 'Green Energy' Supplier: We have changed our gas and energy supplier to 'Bulb' who provide 100% renewable electricity from solar, wind and hydro.
How you can help reduce heating costs and CO2 emissions at the same time
Turn the heating off when you go out or go to bed - There is a myth that leaving the heating on overnight saves energy - it doesn’t! And if you are going out, turn the heating off to save energy too. And turn it off half an hour before going out or to bed as there will be enough heat in the building to keep you warm.
Keep doors closed - not just outside doors, but shut doors to rooms that you don’t use, and turn the heating off in those rooms.
Use a local heater - if you are only using one room (e.g. working from home in an office) then turn the rest of the heating off and just use a small heater in that one room, and keep the door shut.