Sunday, February 26, 2017

Mumbai diocese proposes Lenten 'carbon fast

Carbon FastThe Archdiocese of Bombay has asked Catholics to observe a "carbon fast" during the season of Lent to create awareness about global warming and the importance of a sustainable lifestyle.

Bishop Allwyn D'Silva, head of the Archdiocesan Office for Environment, said the carbon fast will encourage people to examine their daily actions and its effect on the environment.

"The parish can decide what they want to do. This [carbon fast] can be done along with other fasts. All know that the world is affected by climate change," Bishop D'Silva said.

As parish priest of the five-centuries-old St John the Baptist Church in the Mumbai suburb of Thane, Bishop D'Silva had set up a rain-water harvesting system, a solar energy plant and a waste recycling system in the church compound. He promoted the use of energy efficient LED lights and fans that used less electricity.

He said for the carbon fast people could try to reduce their consumption of electricity, use less water and avoid use of plastic.

Brian Pereira, a member of St John the Evangelist Church, Marol, where the carbon fast will be observed on April 7, said that he had several ideas for the day. "I can switch off the television and spend the time in some activity to help the environment, or I can forgo the luxury of my car and use a bicycle," he said.

In the US, the Michigan Interfaith Power and Light group has also proposed a similar initiative, as has the Anglican Communion Environmental Network in previous years.