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CEL home > Resources > Articles for church magazines >January 2012Last updated:December 2011
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Village Green Corner -  Articles for you to use in your church magazine.

For new articles and articles added since March 2012 see new website:- http://www.greenchristian.org.uk/archives/category/parish-articles

New Year Resolutions

rio 1991 display malham
Prayer for the first Earth Summit in 1991

What New Year's Resolutions are you going to make this year for 2012? What Resolutions have you made in the past?

This piece isn't a complete ready made article for you to use in January - but we hope you can take pieces from it.

See earlier CEL January pages:- Make a green resolution this year - 2004 and Dreaming of Holidays Time 2002

Try these CEL pages on self improvement & community improvement with a green slant:-
And lower down look at the Issues of 1) World Ecosystem Services worth 20 Trillion Pounds sterling   2) Earth Summit at Rio 2012   3) Hyderbad 2012 4) Nitrogen Pollution and plant indicators

 

 

Get Fit and avoid obesity Singing Speaking skills Listening skills Get your church to save rainforest
Identifying Plants or Bird Watching Taking Old People on Nature Trips Count your blessings! Campaign ........ your suggestion?
Join CEL Get CEL free News email Get CEL Prayer Diary free Set up a CEL group Prioritise
Donate to the rainforest project Promote your event Display CEL leaflets Become more (dis)ability aware / inclusive Organise a LOAF meal

 

What is special about 2012?

2012 the is Second year of the Decade of Biodiversity.

Biodiversity
can be thought of as
Ecosystem Services:

Our wild ecosystems provide resources worth TRILLIONS of pounds - One estimate is 33 trillion US$ per year. this is nearly twice the value of the global gross national product.

Yet this value is quickly being eroded because we are depleting the world’s resources faster than they can be replenished.

  • Genetic variety - different plants and animals and bacteria can be used for new crops or new medicines
  • Insects including bees pollinate flowers so that fruit can grow
  • Soil holds nutrients for plants, carbon (which would otherwise turn to CO2 and cause clomate change) and stores water - Yet due to deforestation and overgrazing and overploughing soil is being washed away much faster than it is being formed.
  • Genetic heritage (Once species are extinct they are extinct)
  • Water is needed to irrigate the land as well as supply water for industry, washing and drinking
  • Fish in the sea are being vastly overfished - thereby destoying fishing industries

During 2012, could we encourage our churches and goverments to value Ecosystem Services? (i.e.biodiversity)

Can we ensure they support sustainable development that is really sustainable?

Can they give more support to the green economy?

Can we plan to have events and prayers for the two big events this year:-

In 1991 The first Earth Summit was held at Rio. CEL designed posters which churches could use to encourage prayer for the people and events at Rio di Janeiro

Could we do this again 20 years later?

In 2010 CEL produced posters on the Nagoya Meeting on Biodiversity. Let us plan to get posters ready for Hyderbad in 2012.

 

malham-display

Malham 1991

Another "In" word to look out for in 2012 is "Planetary Boundaries"

Nature-environmental-limits2-300x259Scientists in 2009 told us there were "Nine Planetary boundaries" that we must not breach if we want to maintain Earth’s stable state of the last 10,000 years. Like what? Like climate change, ozone depletion, and biodiversity loss; also we are three times over the global limit in our use of nitrogen so excess nitrogen compounds are causing pollution in the air, rivers and soil.

Look out for more news on this in 2012

 

 

 

 

 

Excess nitrogen compounds?

Look out for plants in your area which can indicate high nitrogen compounds (e.g. nitrogen oxides) in the air, water or soil.

Nettles and Jack-by-the-hedge (Garlic Mustard; Alliaria petiolata) both indicate high nitrogen compounds. Jack by the hedge is becoming more common. More sensitive plants can disappear.

Below: picture of gate in Malhamdale in 2011 (not far from the above picture taken in 1991) with a filamentous green alga Klebsormidium crenulatum - this alga is now spreading in Britain. It grows well when there are nitrogen compounds in the air (from cars, fertilizers and manure). the units on the scale are millimetres

Klebsormidium crenulatum
Klebsormidium crenualtum close up
Klebsormidium crenulatum
on fence
Klebsormidium crenulatum
close up

 

Or why not look at Lichens? Join the OPAL survey - or your local natural history group and learn to recognise Physcia tenella (left)(Fringed Rosette lichen) and Xanthoria parietina(right) (Bird Perch lichen) - lichens which can tolerate high levels of nitrogen compounds, and help map nitrogen compound air pollution in the UK - individuals, amateur groups, school groups and church groups welcome.

Physcia tenella
Xanthoria parietina
Physcia tenella
(
Fringed Rosette lichen)
Xanthoria parietina
(
Bird Perch lichen)

 

And finally - Could you persuade your church to raise some money for a "save an acre of habitat" project in 2012?

With one quarter of the wolrd's mammals and 1/5 th of the plants under threat of extincition in our generation surely we should be doing more to protect their habitats. See 100 churches project

 

 

 

ACTION: Use this article in your church magazine

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