May 2017: Change

201705Everyone agrees that climate change is a bad thing. It’s true that most of us won’t be sorry if winters are less harsh. Yet it’s clear that the overall impact on the planet will be very damaging.

If we all agree that climate change is a bad thing, often it’s hard to see what can we do.. Although we’d like to take some action, we end up doing little.

Last year, in St Andrew Blackadder, we changed some of our light bulbs. That sounds like a very minor thing, or perhaps the set up for a light-bulb joke! It’s not. I have been astonished to discover the impact changing some of our light bulbs over to LEDs has had on our carbon footprint.

It turns out that the light bulbs in the Church Hall were very heavy energy users. The LEDs that have replaced them will consume 40% less power. The lights in the Sanctuary and the St Andrew Street entrance were more energy efficient so the savings there are smaller, but still significant.

It turns out that by changing the bulbs in just these three areas we will reduce our annual electricity usage by 12.5%. It means we have taken a significant step to reduce our carbon footprint. Our church has taken a small step to address climate change.

On its own that’s not going to amount to much. But it isn’t on its own. Lots of individuals and groups are discovering small steps they can take. Each of them on their own doesn’t amount to much. Yet, taken together they are beginning to have an impact. Last June figures were published which showed that Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions are going down. Some of that is down to government initiatives. A lot of it is because lots of ordinary people are taking small steps to reduce the energy they use.

The creation story teaches us that God gave humans responsibility to care for the planet. So, both as a Church and as individuals, we need to look for ways in which we can reduce our energy consumption and the impact we have on the environment.

‘The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.’ (Genesis 2:15 )


Creator God,
Bless the tear we shed for the resources we have squandered.
Bless the sigh we breathe out for the atmosphere.
Bless the head we hang for the creatures lost and exploited.
Bless the hands we wring for the things we have broken and wasted.
Bless us as we lament.
Cradle us as we regret.
Restore us as we start afresh.

(John Polhill)

To see other messages from Neil, click on the appropriate month in the table below.

May 2017 June 2017 July 2017 August 2017 September 2017 October 2017 November 2017 December 2017 February 2018 March 2018 April 2018
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