By abstaining from meat on Ash Wednesday and Fridays, we each reduce our responsibility for greenhouse gas emissions from livestock, animals raised for food that produce an estimated 14.5% of human-driven greenhouse gas pollution.* Calculations by the Diocese of Raleigh, N.C., suggest that merely by avoiding all meat on Ash Wednesday and Fridays during Lent, the average observant Catholic’s personal contribution to emissions reduction would amount to 45 pounds of carbon dioxide equivalents. When looked at community-wide, this makes a significant impact! The 446,000 Catholics in the Diocese of Arlington alone could avoid 12,000 tons of CO2 emissions, the equivalent of taking 2600 cars off the road for this full year.
Raleigh’s Greener Lent program promotes the idea of doing a little more than the minimum by enlisting people to reduce their beef consumption in particular and calculates the impact. During this Lent, you could save your weight in CO2e by reducing your consumption of red meat, while eating well and still enjoying some poultry and fish. Check out the options at their website: https://greenerlent.org.
We are all asked to make personal sacrifices during Lent out of appreciation for God’s gifts and Jesus’ sacrifice for us. But not all such sacrifices also offer such a quantifiable positive effect in preserving and protecting God’s creation. After Holy Week, we will check back to ask those who participated in such purposeful fasting what they did, and will calculate Saint Luke parish’s GHG reductions if we obtain enough data. Have a truly meaningful Lent!
*[UN Food and Agriculture Organization
REMINDER – SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 27, AT 4:00 P.M., FLAHERTY HALL
Are You Ready for Gardening Season?
Please join the Care for Creation Ministry as we welcome Master Gardener Kim Young.
Learn tips for eco-friendly gardening in Northern Virginia and bring your questions as we look forward to planting season in McLean!