The Church Of England has signed up to the international A Rocha organisation Eco-church awards and St Catherine’s church in Tranmere has achieved a silver award.
There are three levels of Award: Bronze, Silver, and Gold. St Catherine’s achieved Bronze a couple of years ago and has now achieved Silver.
In addition to the Eco-church award, there are also eco-diocese and eco-schools awards that all enable people to get to grips with climate change and loss of biodiversity and learn how they can reduce their carbon footprints and enhance biodiversity.
The Eco-church awards are based on worship and teaching, the buildings – church and office and other buildings they may own, the land, community and global engagement, and the personal lifestyle of the members.
At St Catherine’s, they have been including eco issues in their worship and teaching. The energy supply for their buildings comes from a non-fossil fuel provider, and they have installed energy-efficient LED lighting, use environmentally-friendly chemicals for cleaning, and recycle.
Although St Catherine’s only has a small area of grass and flower beds, they have planted fruit trees and bushes and now have over 100 species of flowers attracting a variety of birds and insects.
Engaging with the local community they have helped organise Great Big Green Week for the past two years to encourage others in the community to engage with the problems of climate change and loss of biodiversity.
The church has encouraged its members to reduce their carbon footprints and are encourage to use FairTrade and locally-grown produce.