The Bishop of London the Rt Revd Richard Chartres led Church of England environment officers on a Transport for London hybrid bus trip today. The ride was part of the CofE's continuing commitment to environmental issues, through its Shrinking the Footprint campaign.
Delegates from dioceses around the country took the bus tour from Victoria (Westminster Roman Catholic Cathedral) to St Paul's Cathedral and then onto St Saviour's church, Knightsbridge. The new fleet reduces emissions of local pollutants and carbon dioxide by at least 30 per cent compared to conventional diesel buses.
They were briefed about a range of initiatives aimed at lowering the CofE's carbon footprint, providing best practice examples of how modern environmental methods can work with church buildings.
Bishop Richard, chair of the CofE's national environmental campaign Shrinking the Footprint spoke of the importance of practical action: "Christians are called on to care for creation, to be stewards of this good Earth for the sake of the common good. But you can't leave it at the level of rhetoric. We have to actually make sure we are taking some very practical initiatives.
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Notes to editors
Church of England's national environmental campaign www.shrinkingthefootprint.org
Route 2050 is the Diocese of London's long-term plan to reduce the carbon footprint of its buildings and property by 20.12% by 2012, 42% by 2020 and 80% by 2050, relative to 2005 – its primary purpose to plan and manage reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. St Paul's Cathedral as the cathedral church for the diocese of London is looking at opportunities to reduce its carbon footprint. These include investigating a replacement heating system for the cathedral and, in conjunction with the Corporation of the City of London, preparing to design a new low emission external lighting system. Rain water harvesting is also being considered. http://www.stpauls.co.uk/Cathedral-History/St-Pauls-the-Environment
Transport for London's hybrid buses are quieter, cleaner and more fuel-efficient than standard diesel buses. They reduce emissions of local pollutants and carbon dioxide by at least 30 per cent compared to conventional diesel buses. There are currently 106 diesel-electric hybrid buses in London with an additional 50 hybrid buses are currently being added to the fleet. http://www.tfl.gov.uk/corporate/projectsandschemes/2019.aspx
St Saviour's Church, Knightsbridge was threatened with redundancy but a successful conservation plan to redevelop the site, means St Saviour's now boasts a worship area and theatre for young people.