Energy Footprint Tool

26th April 2021

The Church of England Birmingham (CofEB) is focussed on the Church of England target for all parts of the church to work to become carbon ‘net zero’ by 2030, as we work towards the fifth mark of mission to strive to safeguard the integrity of creation, and sustain and renew the life of the earth.

The main focus for 2021 is to gather information on current energy usage and carbon emissions across the CofEB. The Energy Footprint Tool (EFT) is available to all Church of England churches using the Online Parish Returns System. In order to complete the EFT you will simply need to input the electricity and gas/oil bills for your church in 2020.

The EFT was first introduced in 2020, and about 44% of churches within the CofEB submitted their 2019 energy consumption data. From the information submitted, the estimated carbon footprint for church buildings within the CofEB is a total 2,800 tonnes of net CO2 emissions. This year we hope to double the number of churches engaging with the EFT so that we will have information on energy usage for 90% of our church buildings, which will provide a more accurate picture of the carbon footprint for the whole CofEB and consider how to reduce it.

If all churches switched to a renewable electricity tariff, the estimated total net carbon footprint for church buildings would be 22% smaller. Of the CofEB churches that submitted information to the EFT last year, 32% have already made this switch to renewable electricity tariffs. All churches are encouraged to consider making the switch to renewable electricity tariffs as one way of working towards the target to reach net zero carbon.

In 2020 our churches were closed for many weeks, so energy use was not normal. The EFT has built in a special adjustment for the time spent in lockdown in 2020, which will allow a sensible comparison for the efficiency of your church’s energy consumption compared with any data from 2019, and also gives us a way to make sensible comparisons in future years.

The EFT will be open for churches to submit their 2020 energy consumption data until August 2021.

If you have further questions about the CofEB Environmental programme or how your church can become engaged, please contact netzerocarbon@cofebirmingham.com