Scroll down for November’s prayers.
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“The heavens are yours; the earth also is yours; the world and all that is in it, you have founded them”. Psalm 89 verse 11
“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” George Bernard Shaw
Thursday October 31st
Halloween costumes sold by UK retailers are set to generate more than 2,000 tonnes of plastic waste, equivalent by weight to 83 million bottles, according to new research. Research from Hubbub and the family nature charity Fairyland Trust found that Halloween costumes sold by 19 retailers, including Argos, Tesco and Sainsbury’s, will generate more than 2,000 tonnes of plastic waste. Research by Hubbub estimated that 33 million people dressed up for Halloween in 2017, but 40% of costumes were worn just once.
Friday November 1st
Today is World Vegan Day at the start of World Vegan Month. Many people are switching away from meat and dairy, either completely or for some things they eat. Either way, Green Christian wants people to use their LOAF when choosing food.
Saturday November 2nd
The Russian government has drastically watered-down its new package of climate change legislation after push-back from the country’s leading businesses. Plans for quotas on carbon emissions at Russia’s largest companies, a new national carbon trading system and penalties for the biggest polluters have now been scrapped. Instead, Russia will only go ahead with proposals to measure and collect data on emissions as part of a five-year green audit. The campaign against a stricter package of measures was led by the influential Russian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (RSPP) — one of the main lobbying groups for Russia’s largest businesses.
Sunday November 3rd
Father, we pray for a vision of your world as your love would make it:
A world where the weak are protected and none go hungry or poor;
A world where the benefits of life are fairly shared;
A world where nations, races, cultures and religions live with mutual respect;
A world where peace is built with justice, and justice is guided by love, and that we may have the courage and inspiration to play our part in building it.
Monday November 4th
The UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has unveiled a string of new measures designed to prevent issuers from ‘greenwashing’, covering challenges such as climate risk reporting and the accessibility of ‘green’ products such as mortgages. While growing at an exponential rate, the green finance market is still in its infancy and is, therefore, suffering from a lack of definition. What is considered “green” varies from investor to investor and from bank to bank, both in terms of business clientele and financial offerings from the sector. But with a new wave of climate activism now taking hold across the UK and other developed nations, calls for finance giants to divest from high-carbon projects and “green” the majority of their products are mounting.
Tuesday November 5th
Around now many people will be having a bonfire and fireworks party, or going to a display. Last year The Independent wrote an article on how to have a more environmentally friendly Guy Fawkes night. Ideas included
- Don’t burn man made items
- Watch out for hibernating animals.
- Consider using eco-friendly fireworks
- Buy biodegradable sky lanterns
Wednesday November 6th
A new green fund being set up by Indonesia’s Environment Ministry should prioritise protecting its rainforests and create a carbon trading program to help the country meet its goals to curb climate change, environmentalists and officials have said. It is due to begin operating at the beginning of 2020 with initial funding from land restoration payments and fines that the state collects from environmental crime cases, as well as money from foreign donors. Home to the world’s third-largest tropical forests, Indonesia is also the biggest producer of palm oil, which many green groups blame for the clearing of forests for plantations.
Thursday November 7th
Latin American countries have set a collective target of 70% renewable energy use by 2030, more than double what the European Union is planning. The plan is meant to put Colombia and eight others in leadership roles ahead of the U.N. climate change summit in Chile in December, energy minister Maria Fernanda Suarez told Reuters in an interview. “It’s the most ambitious goal in terms of a global region. Right now, nine countries in the region have agreed to this plan and we will continue to get more countries to be part of this goal ahead of the upcoming summit,” she said, noting the European Union has set a renewable energy target of 32%. Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Honduras, Guatemala, Haiti, the Dominican Republic and Colombia are part of the pact. Panama and Brazil are still weighing participation, Suarez said.
Friday November 8th
Boris Johnson has been revealed as the chair for a new Cabinet committee on climate change that will drive progress towards net-zero across all areas of Government. He will steer the new internal committee, which has been established as part of the Government’s response to the Committee on Climate Change’s (CCC) annual progress report. The aims of the sub-committee are to establish governance and enforcement mechanisms that accelerate cross-government efforts to deliver the legally binding net-zero target that is set for 2050. The timing of Johnson’s appointment follows his criticism of the Extinction Rebellion protests in October, where he branded climate change protestors “uncooperative crusties”.
Saturday November 9th
Today is the Green Christian annual members meeting, 1pm till 5pm, starting with a bring and share lunch. St Andrew’s Lower Hall, Short Street, London SE1 8LJ. Free, but please book. As well as reviewing our past year’s activities, at this year’s gathering we’ll consider how Christians can engage with the climate and ecological emergency, with speakers from the Religion and Extinction Project.
Sunday November 10th
Father, we thank you for your great gifts of wisdom and ingenuity. Help us to place them wholly at your service in the quest for technologies to protect the world that you created, and all the creatures that live in it.
Monday November 11th
The President of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has said climate change remains the biggest threat to the realisation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), especially in Africa. Speaking at the 2nd Africa Climate Chance Summit held in Accra in October, President Akufo-Addo said it is in Africa’s interests to decisively fight climate change. “Climate change is here with us. It is evident by the prolonged and intense droughts in Eastern Africa, unprecedented floods in Western Africa, depletion of rain forest along the equator as well as the increase in ocean acidity across Africa’s southern coast” and extreme weather conditions that threaten agriculture production, food security, health, among others.
Tuesday November 12th
The President of Ghana has also expressed Ghana’s commitment to reducing her carbon footprints and would contribute significantly towards helping to win the fight against climate change. “We …have … decided to increase the renewable energy component of our energy mix to 10%, up from 1%, by 2020. The target is to install 200 megawatts of distributed solar power by 2030 in both residential and non-residential facilities, and in state agencies, to reduce Government’s dependence on power generated by fossil fuels.” Jubilee House, the seat of Ghana’s presidency, would soon be powered by solar energy, as an example to other institutions or public buildings.
Wednesday November 13th
More than one in five shareholders of mining giant BHP have backed a resolution calling on the company to resign its membership of any industry associations whose advocacy is “inconsistent” with the Paris climate change agreement. BHP’s board recommended shareholders vote against the resolution at its annual meeting in London, but 22% of shareholders voted in favour, with another 7% abstaining. While the resolution failed, campaigners are seeing the strength of the vote as a sign pressure is building on both BHP and the Minerals Council of Australia to bring their advocacy in line with the Paris goal of keeping global heating “well below 2°C”.
Thursday November 14th
For the first time in history, conservationists have collected rubbish from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch for recycling. After one year of testing, The Ocean Cleanup organisation announced in October that their System 001/B vessel is successfully capturing and collecting plastic debris. The self-contained system uses the natural forces of the ocean to passively catch and concentrate plastic in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
Friday November 15th
New Scientist magazine has published an article about eco anxiety and what people can do about it. Suggestions include live in alignment with your values, cut back on flying and find like-minded people.
Saturday November 16th
Spikes in air pollution trigger hundreds of heart attacks, strokes and acute asthma attacks in English cities compared to days when the air is cleaner, according to new research. A study by King’s College London found there are significant short-term health risks caused by air pollution, as well as contributing to up to 36,000 deaths every year. The study looked at data from nine English cities It found on high pollution days – days when pollutant levels were in the top half of the annual range – there were an extra 124 cardiac arrests on average.
Sunday November 17th
Help us, Father, so to deal with the things that we possess that they may never possess us. May we so order our lifestyle that we may tread lightly on your earth. May all the good things that you have entrusted to us be used in your service and for the glory of your Kingdom.
Monday November 18th
India’s ambitious renewable energy goals have received a lot of international attention, but coal still provides more than half of India’s commercial primary energy and is expected to remain the dominant fuel in the country till well past 2030. Currently, more than 65% of India’s electricity comes from thermal power plants and nearly 85% of the country’s thermal power plants are coal-based. Sristi Jain, a climate activist and mobilizer based in India, said: “Coal generates the majority of India’s electricity and coal-consuming industrial sectors continue to grow, despite the health and environmental consequences it has on the country.”
Tuesday November 19th
The UK is planning to invest in Argentina’s controversial oil shale industry using a £1bn export finance deal intended to support green energy, according to government documents seen by the Guardian. UK Export Finance, the government’s foreign credit agency, promised in 2017 to offer loans totalling £1bn to help UK companies export their expertise in “infrastructure, green energy and healthcare” to invest in Argentina’s economy. Instead official records, released through a freedom of information request, have revealed the government’s plan to prioritise support for major oil companies, including Shell and BP, which are fracking in Argentina’s vast Vaca Muerta shale heartlands.
Wednesday November 20th
New York’s attorney general is accusing Exxon Mobil of lying to investors about how profitable the company will remain as governments impose stricter regulations to combat global warming. The lawsuit claims the Texas energy giant kept two sets of books — one accounting for climate change regulations and the other underestimating the costs — to make the company appear more valuable to investors. Exxon denied the allegations, calling them politically motivated, and said the company looks forward to being exonerated in court.
Thursday November 21st
Seagrass is a wonder-plant that lives in shallow, sheltered areas along our coast. It is vital to the health of our seas and can help address environmental problems. Seagrass captures carbon up to 35 times faster than tropical rainforests and, even though it only covers 0.2% of the seafloor, it absorbs 10% of the ocean’s carbon each year, making it an incredible tool in the fight against climate change. In the UK, up to 92 % of our seagrass has disappeared in the last century. WWF is working with Sky Ocean Rescue and Swansea University to bring these incredible underwater meadows back to life, by launching the biggest seagrass restoration project ever undertaken in the UK.
Friday November 22nd
This weekend is the Green Christian retreat Signs of Hope – a Green Weekend at Launde Abbey, on the borders of Leicestershire and Rutland. Green Christian retreats provide an annual opportunity to meet other Green Christian members in beautiful, reflective and friendly surroundings. They are also open to anyone who cares about the future of our planet.
Saturday November 23rd
Greenhouse gas emissions would go up if all farms in England and Wales went organic. Though the emissions of individual farms would go down, much more food would have to be imported as the amount they would produce would decrease substantially. “The key message from my perspective is that you can’t really have your cake and eat it,” says Laurence Smith, now at the Royal Agricultural University in the UK, who was part of the team that performed the analysis. Smith is a proponent of organic farming and says “there are a lot of benefits to the organic approach”. But his analysis shows organic farming has downsides too.
Sunday November 24th
Lord God, strengthen our weak wills and our feeble frames so that we may work tirelessly for the fulfilment of your promise for the redemption of all creation from the bondage of corruption. This we pray in the Name of Jesus Christ, our Saviour and Redeemer
Monday November 25th
A new study conducted by researchers at Switzerland’s ETH-Zürich, details how planet earth could support almost an additional billion hectares of trees without the new forests pushing into existing urban or agricultural areas. Once the trees grow to maturity, they could store more than 200 billion metric tons of carbon. The research team combined Google Earth mapping software with a database of nearly 80,000 existing forests to create a predictive model for optimal planting locations. In total, 0.9 billion hectares of new, continuous forest could be planted. Once mature, the 500 billion new trees in these forests would be capable of storing about two-thirds of the carbon we have emitted since the industrial revolution.
Tuesday November 26th
So, is it realistic to plant 500 billion new trees? The short answer would be that yes, it’s possible—with the help of technology.
However, there are many unanswered challenges. For example, many of areas identified by the ETH-Zürich research team are not readily available for reforestation. Some are currently reserved for grazing, others owned by private entities, and others again are located in remote areas or areas prone to political instability, beyond the reach of most replanting efforts. Technologies being looked at include drone planting which involves dropping biodegradable seed pods at a designated area. The pods dissolve over time, and the tree seeds grow in the earth below. Artificial Intelligence and sensors can be used to monitor forested areas, and, more controversially, bioengineering could be used to make trees faster growing and more resistant to disease.
Wednesday November 27th
Austin, Athens, Lisbon, and Venice are the latest major cities to have peaked their greenhouse gas emissions. The world’s leading scientists have calculated that global greenhouse gas emissions must peak by 2020 in order to limit global temperature rise to 1.5°C. New analysis published ahead of the C40 World Mayors Summit confirms that 30 of the world’s largest cities, representing more than 58 million citizens, have now reached this crucial milestone.
Thursday November 28th
C40 is a network of the world’s megacities committed to addressing climate change. A few notable examples of the progress cities have accomplished over the past 10 years include:
- Eighty-two C40 cities have implemented cycle hire schemes, compared to 13 in 2009.
- There are more than 66,000 electric buses on the streets of C40 cities, compared to fewer than 100 in 2009.
- Twenty-four cities have committed to achieving 100% renewable electricity by 2030, compared to 4 in 2009.
- Eighteen C40 cities have banned or restricted single-use, non-recyclable plastics, compared to 2 in 2009.
Friday November 29th
The Charter for Trees, Woods and People sets out the principles for a society in which people and trees can stand stronger together. The Tree Charter was launched in Lincoln Castle on 6 November 2017; the 800th anniversary of the 1217 Charter of the Forest. The Tree Charter is rooted in more than 60,000 ‘tree stories’ gathered from people of all backgrounds across the UK.
Saturday November 30th
The last Saturday of November each year is Tree Charter Day – a day for the whole of UK society to unite in celebrating the value and importance of trees and woods to people. This year it marks the end of National Tree Week, chosen as it is the start of the winter tree planting season. The Tree Council, one of the UK’s leading charities for trees, first established National Tree Week in March 1975 in response to the national replanting required after the outbreak of Dutch Elm disease.
Text and links compiled by Emma King. Links accessed Oct 19.
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