All Christians are called to be stewards of the precious and beautiful world that God created and commissioned to our care. For many years, scientists have warned us that some of the practices of our modern lifestyle are changing and threatening life on our fragile planet. The Board of Global Ministries has been called to provide more funds than ever before for relief from natural disasters, and they created a special division called Earthkeepers to help make the situation known in United Methodist congregations. The hope is that informed individuals and churches can find ways to help decrease their own release of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere and help slow the global warming that will make drought, super storms, fire, flood and famine ever more devastating and costly.
The Desert Southwest Conference Covenant Council has given our newly re-activated Earth Care Task Force the responsibility of providing an action plan for our Conference to join other Annual Conferences and numerous general agencies of the United Methodist Church in working toward the goal of Net Zero carbon emissions by 2050 in our Conference facilities, homes, and churches. The Desert Southwest Conference Earth Care Task Force is beginning that task by providing all interested laity and clergy information, tools, and encouragement so that we can all work together to build a net zero emissions economy by 2050. It is our hope that you will present this brief summary of the Net Zero commitment to your church’s administrative board and begin a discussion of ways that each church and agency in the Desert Southwest Conference can work toward net zero carbon emissions. We would be pleased to hear from you about steps that you are already taking to help protect the beauty of our earth.
The following is a brief description by the alliance of UM agencies of the commitment, the definition of Net Zero, why it’s important, and how it can be achieved. The DSC Earth Care Task Force will continue to support this campaign as described above. Click here to review the complete Net Zero document.
We, the agencies of The United Methodist Church, pledge to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 across ministries, facilities, operations, and investments and to leverage the gifts of our connection putting equity and justice at the center as we build a net-zero emission economy by 2050.
- Discipleship Ministries
- General Board of Church and Society
- General Board of Global Ministries
- General Board of Higher Education
- General Commission on Archives and History
- General Commission on Religion and Race
- General Commission on the Status and Role of Women
- General Council on Finance and Administration
- United Methodist Communications
- United Methodist Men
- Wespath Benefits and Investments
- United Women in Faith
WHAT DOES NET ZERO MEAN?
Put simply, net zero means cutting greenhouse gas emissions to as close to zero as possible, with any remaining emissions re-absorbed from the atmosphere, by oceans and forests.
WHY IS NET ZERO IMPORTANT?
To prevent the worst impacts of climate change and preserve a livable planet, global temperature increase needs to be limited to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. Currently, the Earth is already about 1.1°C warmer than it was in the late 1800s, and emissions continue to rise. To keep global warming to no more than 1.5°C — as called for in the Paris Agreement — emissions need to be reduced by 45% by 2030 and reach net zero by 2050.
HOW CAN NET ZERO BE ACHIEVED?
Transitioning to a net-zero world will require transforming how we produce, consume, and move about. Replacing polluting coal, gas and oil-fired power with energy from renewable sources, such as wind or solar, would dramatically reduce carbon emissions.
Submitted by the following members of the DSC Earth Care Task Force: