Our environmental problems keep growing because not enough people get involved in trying to solve them. Getting involved means adopting new lifestyles that are good for the environment, the climate, and the people themselves – and then inspiring others to do the same. As consumers, voters, and members of society we can achieve a lot.
One way to get people to adopt a new lifestyle is letting them try it and experience how it affects their lives: learn by doing. For those who want to do something about climate change without losing quality of life, we developed the Low-Carbon Diet. It is free of charge for participants and it is online-based so that anyone, anywhere, can do it. We provide practical information to participants on how to reduce carbon emissions in their daily life. The diet plan covers nutrition, mobility, living, and working. Since it helps to have a coaching partner with whom you can share your experiences, I also offer online coaching.
The Low-Carbon Diet works well in different contexts: conferences, fairs, festivals, and other activities. I wondered if this would also work in a religious context? Faith-based organizations have a very important role to play in the environmental protection movement. Their membership is big, diverse, and represents a cross-section of society. If we succeed in mobilising these members, we can reach the critical mass we need to make a real difference.
In 2011, I approached Fr. Karl Kern, SJ, rector of the Jesuit Church of St. Michael in Munich, Germany, and proposed a trial project, inviting people to go on the Low-Carbon Diet during Lent and our first Lenten Carbon Fast was born. It was so successful that we are repeating it this year on a bigger scale. Not only does it help people do something concrete for the environment, it also enhances St. Michael’s online communications.
Our goal is to connect “globally thinking, locally acting” people through an international network. We plan to extend the Lenten Carbon Fast in 2012 to English-speaking countries with high per-capita carbon emissions such as the USA, Canada, UK, and Australia. We invite partners – people who want to join the journey to a sustainable, good, and low-carbon life. Here and now.
Mr Izai Amorim, born 1963 in Brazil, is an architect and branding consultant. In 2009 he founded Certified Coolness Limited, a company for environment protection services and is one of its managing directors. He lives and works in Munich, Germany and he may be reached at ia(at)certifiedcoolness.de.
This post is also available in: Spanish