FAITHFULNESS, EVEN IN SMALL THINGS, MATTERS

As evangelicals seeking to be faithful disciples of Jesus we know that our choices–no matter how small they may seem–are important in God’s sight. Reflecting on our personal lifestyle and making the best choices we can to protect the integrity of God’s gift of creation may seem insignificant, even silly in light of how big ecological problems like climate change are, but making such choices, and struggling with the ups and downs of those choices, is what being a faithful Christian means. Regardless of the size of the ecological impact your personal lifestyle choice makes, your faithfulness does make a difference in your relationship with God.

“These actions are really important because we need to get emissions per capita down to 2 tonnes per year by 2050 and for some of these actions we don’t have easy technological fixes.”

Seth Wynes: Environmental Research Letters, 2017

MILLIONS OF FAITHFUL PEOPLE CAN HAVE A BIG IMPACT

It is also true that if millions of evangelicals did make lifestyle choices commensurate with the call to care for God’s creation the collective impact of those decisions would make a positive difference! The impact would not only benefit the creation’s ecosystems, but also our neighbors who struggle with poverty and who suffer the most from the affects of pollution.

MAKE A PERSONAL COMMITMENT IN A HIGH IMPACT AREA

Living the Change invites you to make a pledge to live more sustainably and make a personal lifestyle commitment in at least one of three high-impact areas: transportation, energy use, and diet.

Each of these three areas represents an opportunity to save more than 0.8 tonnes of CO2 per capita per year. The corresponding data was compiled by Wynes and Nicholas as part of their study in the 2017 Environmental Research Letters, which compared all actions of one individual on a life cycle basis, under current average conditions in developed countries.

THE 3 PRIORITIES OF SUSTAINABLE LIVING

Eco-friendly TRANSPORTATION

What: Using a more sustainable method of transport. Moving towards a car-free life, and avoiding transport by airplane as much as possible.

Why: Living car-free for a year saves 2.4 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, while each roundtrip transatlantic flight avoided saves an additional 1.8 tonnes.

Reducing ENERGY use

What: Most of the energy we use in our buildings for heating, lighting, appliances, hot water, and cooking comes from burning fossil fuels (coal, gas, or oil). We burn them either directly or indirectly through the use of electricity. Instead, one can switch to green energy tariffs, create one’s own renewable energy sources, and phase out energy from fossil fuels.

Why: Moving towards renewable energy sources can save up to 1.6 tonnes of CO2 per year per person.

Plant-based DIET

What: Transitioning from a meat- and dairy-based diet to a plant-based diet, as well as reducing food waste.

Why: Eating a plant-based diet saves 0.8 tonnes of CO2 emissions per year. This represents 4 times more greenhouse gas emissions per year than recycling. Plus, it is the most ethical approach, and also helps improve health and well-being!