Environment Policies

There are many examples of Environment Policies for individual churches that can be accessed on the internet using a search engine, for example by typing church environment policy uk.

Such policies usually begin with a statement of the theological principles on which the policy is based and may quote the Fifth Mark of Mission – To strive to safeguard the integrity of creation and to sustain the life of the earth.

The main part of the policy will probably list a number of areas of church life and practice that are to receive attention, such as:

  • How environmental issues are to be included in worship and the teaching programme.
  • The way outside spaces – for example, the churchyard – can be managed to benefit wildlife and encourage biodiversity.
  • The minimizing of the use of energy in the church building.
  • The avoidance of waste, by recycling or allowing others to re-use items no longer useful.
  • The consumption of food that has been sourced locally and has been fairly traded.
  • The efficient use of water in the church.
  • The use of eco-friendly cleaning products.
  • The promotion of sustainable transport for the journeys members make to church and for trips elsewhere made by church groups.    

The policy should also state who is responsible for administering the policy and what arrangements there are for monitoring and reviewing progress.

It may also provide a list of links to other organizations that can assist with the implementation of the policy.

Denominational environment policies

The Church of England has a national environmental campaign Shrinking the Footprint, and several dioceses have produced their own model environmental policy statements.

The Methodist Church and United Reformed Church both adopted environmental policies a number of years ago.