“You Think You Can Change the Climate?”
I was not prepared when an acquaintance at a Super Bowl party asked this question in response to my sharing that I am working on the climate crisis. It seemed a long time before my response, “yes I do.” That got me thinking.
Being a climate activist is a challenge. Although science interests me, debating does not. I feel God’s presence in my life, but not the impulse to proselytize. Good public speakers inspire me, but the thought of presenting a formal paper makes my knees knock. And I definitely do not relate the climate crisis and creation care to politics or tribal orientation. Being a citizen who leads by example is my style. That doesn’t engender followers, but perhaps that technique will stimulate action. To that end, I offer the following list of actions the Green Team and I have taken that do indeed, change the climate:
– We have begun a program to limit single use plastic at church and home.
– The team has planted a demonstration garden with elementary students.
– We have recycled plastic and cans from the Salt River Recreation Area.
– Our preschool has planted a veggie garden.
– Recycling plastic, aluminum, glass and corrugated directly helps.
– We collect green waste and dig it into gardens to trap carbon.
– We personally finance as well as plant trees to increase O2 (oxygen.)
– Repurposing unwanted household items reduces mfg. new items.
– We have divested our retirement accounts away from fossil fuels.
– Our family car is a hybrid with terrific mileage with batteries/gasoline.
– When forced to fly we buy carbon offsets (AZ Interfaith Power & Light.)
– Added insulation causes our home air conditioner to run less.
– Our community garden helps avoid trucking food into the stores.
– We installed a high efficiency heat pump at home & church.
– We switched lighting at home & church to reduce power needs.
These are a few activities that have proven to improve our environment, changing the climate. The time for action is now. Can you help?
By EarthKeeper, JP Smith.
17,000 Climate Leaders trained and working around the world! You can be trained (for free) by experts in climate change and community organizing in Atlanta or Brisbane, Australia. Dozens were trained this year from Arizona/Nevada, so you will have support and may consider joining the Baja Chapter in Tucson. Put this training in your climate toolbox to get out there and be more effective in creation care!
WHAT DO THESE VEGGIES HAVE IN COMMON?
Artichokes, asparagus, beets, bok choy, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, collard,
endive, kale, kohlrabi, lettuce, leek, okra (yuk), onion, peas, radish, rutabaga, spinach, turnips.
They ALL can be planted in the Phoenix area NOW!
Winter gardens in the Valley do great!
Dove of the Desert United Methodist Church http://www.doveofthedesert.com/
The Board of Church and Society at Dove will be presenting “Global Warming – A Christian Perspective” on Saturday, November 10 in rooms 15/16 from 10:00 am – 2:30 pm. This presentation is the product of months of hard work and current research by members of the Dove Church and Society Board. Much effort was put into gathering and fact checking the data being presented. Please join us to educate ourselves on the issue in order to learn and consider what possible roles we, as Christians, might have as stewards of God’s creation on managing Climate Change. There will be discussion breaks included in this program. We are asking for RSVPs by November 5th so that we can arrange the seating in the room and plan for a light lunch.
RSVP to Marti in Dove’s office at 623-572-7334 or email Jill at firstname.lastname@example.org
Each 4 X 8 plot has a hose bibb.
Along with the Global Missions training I received to become a EarthKeeper in the Methodist church, UMCOR also published some of the projects attendees accomplished when they were commissioned to go back to their communities. Creating a church garden and Green Team were my projects and these were spread across the U.S. via the web page referenced above. Just some encouragement to look for information outlets that may not be obvious. Thx, JP Smith.
The Care for Creation Ministry from the Franciscan Renewal Center is tackling the consumption of single-use plastic as a primary 2018 goal. Cleaner air, land, and oceans have inspired this mission. Much of the work will involve education. For example, do you know that nearly 300 million tons of plastics are manufactured each year? Fifty percent of that is used just once and thrown away. So what to do? What about starting small? Plastic straws are one item we can easily eliminate from our lifestyles. Although using one straw does not seem as though it could ruin the environment, the sheer volume of straws used is the problem. Americans use an estimated 500 million straws a day – roughly the same weight as 1000 cars. And straws don’t biodegrade and are nearly impossible to recycle. In fact, it’s likely that every straw ever used still exists on our planet. In addition…
- Straws harm marine life,
- Straws take up to 100 years to decompose,
- Straws increase ocean toxicity,
- Straws are made of precious fossil fuels, and
- Straws disrupt eco-systems.
“Straws are a gateway plastic,” says Dune Ives, executive director of Lonely Whale, a nonprofit committed to protecting the oceans and marine life. She doesn’t mean that a person who uses straws will be drawn to using other plastics, She means that eliminating straws is an easy first step for people to give up other types of plastics and to begin thinking about the effect of straws on the environment. No one has to give up sipping a favorite drink through a straw; there are alternatives to plastic. Reusable straws are made from bamboo, steel, glass; in addition, some water bottles have reusable straws.
So. join with C4C in this achievable goal. Do a little research and see for yourself the damage that straws do to nature. A good place to start would be 1millionwomen.com.au and news.nationalgeographic.com. And then go shopping, as we have, for an alternative that you can embrace!
A time for Action-
As President T. Roosevelt said, “Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” Sounds like good advice even in this era. It seems likely that God created the goodness of the Earth for every creature, not every corporation. I challenge you to do more than talk, tweet, comment and post.
Mark your calendars for Saturday, January 27th, 2018. For on that date, our Desert Southwest Conference will do something it has never done before… host a Conference-wide workshop named, Invitation to Earth Care and Advocacy. Different congregations are supporting this effort to bring concerned citizens together to learn, practice and listen to everyone interested in Creation Care. This first-ever workshop day will be held in the conference meeting rooms, 1550 E. Meadowbrook Ave., Phoenix.
“The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it.” Psalm 24:1
Notice how things slow down during the hot summer months in Arizona? At the Franciscan Renewal Center many parishioners flee to cooler climates, and those who remain in Arizona sorely miss our collaborators who work with us on climate change issues. There is one thing, however, that we can continue to do as individuals – no government, no state, no city help needed. And that is recycling! The Recycling Committee, which is part of the Care for Creation Committee at the Casa, has tirelessly researched this subject and has presented their findings in events throughout the year. Recycling is one area that should never slow down, no matter what the weather. All that is needed is a strong sense of personal responsibility and care for the earth.
Have you ever tossed a plastic bag in the recycling bin and wondered if you were doing the right thing? There are so many types of plastics and sorting them properly seems so complicated! If so, the following information will help.
You can recycle the following bags if they are clean and dry:
- Bread bags, food storage bags, newspaper bags,
- Air pillows – those air-filled bags used in shipping,
- Case wrap – the plastic wrapped around packs of water bottles,
- Napkins, paper towels, bathroom tissue, diaper wrap packaging,
- Grocery and retail bags,
- Furniture and electronic wrap,
- Any bag that has the How2Recycle label. How2Recycle.info presents clear information about labeling.
What next now that everything is sorted? That’s easy! The following stores are partners in recycling plastic film – Safeway, Albertsons, Fry’s , Bashas’, Sprouts, Target.
Want to learn more about recycling plastics? Check out plasticfilmrecycling.org.