News and events

Catholic investment for an integral ecology: webinar series

Posted in: Events, Featured
Date posted: 15 September 2020

This autumn, we would like to invite you to join a webinar series to find out how Catholic religious orders, dioceses and other organisations can use their investments to accelerate the clean energy transition and support a green recovery.

Part 1: Fossil fuel divestment: Accelerating the clean energy transition
Tuesday 22 September 2020, 4.00-5.30pm
Register to join the webinar

This webinar will give an overview of how Catholic religious orders, dioceses and other organisations can divest from the fossil fuel industry and support a just recovery from Covid-19. It will also be an opportunity to find out why the Vatican recommended divestment from fossil fuel companies in June 2020.

Speakers include:

  • Fr Augusto Zampini, Co-Secretary of the Vatican Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development
  • Dr Lorna Gold, Vice Chair of the Global Catholic Climate Movement
  • Br Stephen Power SJ, former Treasurer of Jesuits in Britain
  • Sr Susan Francois CSJP, Assistant Congregation Leader and Congregation Treasurer, Sisters of St Joseph of Peace
  • James Buchanan, Bright Now Campaign Manager, Operation Noah

Part 2: Investment for a green recovery: Innovation in impact investing
Wednesday 21 October 2020, 4.00-5.30pm
Register to join the webinar

The webinar will give an overview of how Catholic religious orders, organisations and individuals can make investments with positive environmental and social impacts.

Speakers include:

  • Lord Deben, Chair of UK’s Committee on Climate Change
  • Dr Sr Gemma Simmonds CJ, Director of Religious Life Institute at University of Cambridge
  • Neil Thorns, Director of Advocacy and Communications at CAFOD
  • Sr Pat Daly OP, former Executive Director of Tri-State Coalition for Responsible Investment
  • Shaun Cooper, Head of Finance at Franciscan Missionaries of the Divine Motherhood
  • Victoria Carrion, Director of Membership and Partnerships at the Catholic Impact Investing Collaborative

This webinar series is sponsored by Operation Noah, Catholic Impact Investing Collective, the Global Catholic Climate Movement, CAFOD, Trocaire, Conference of Religious, Association of Provincial Bursars, National Justice & Peace Network and Justice and Peace Scotland.

Register to join the webinars

For more information about the webinars and to register for your place:

Climate Sunday Launches!

Posted in: Featured
Date posted: 4 September 2020



Marking the start of the annual season of Creationtide, the Climate Sunday initiative begins on Sunday 6 September with local churches across Britain and Ireland holding climate-focused services to explore the theological and scientific basis of creation care and of action on climate, to pray and to commit to action.

With the climate crisis accelerating and greater public support for a green recovery post COVID-19, there has never been a more crucial time for UK churches to come together to pray and act on the climate crisis. Over 700 churches registered before the year-long initiative has begun, so the organisers are hoping that there will be thousands of local Climate Sundays, with congregations from every denomination and tradition.

The culmination of the campaign will be a national Climate Sunday event in Glasgow on Sunday 5 September 2021, to celebrate the commitments made by churches at local level over the previous year. We will also present the UK government with the combined commitments and calls, which all local churches have made, to show our political leaders that they have our support for acting boldly, justly and compassionately on this issue.

The Climate Sunday initiative, organised by CTBI’s Environmental Issues Network (EIN), is the UK’s largest joint project planned by UK Churches on Climate Change, with formal backing from almost 20 organisations. The idea for Climate Sunday was conceived by Operation Noah.

Andy Atkins, the chair of the coalition, said: “With the climate crisis accelerating and the UK due to host the COP26 climate talks in November 2021 in Glasgow, we believe the time has come for all churches across the UK to pray about and act on the climate crisis, as we have done in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Our vision is to leave a lasting legacy of thousands of UK churches better equipped to address this critical issue as part of their normal discipleship and mission; and to make a very significant contribution to civil society efforts to secure adequate national and international action at the COP26 conference.”

Church congregations can register to participate in Climate Sunday and access service resources for a range of traditions by visiting the Climate Sunday website.



Operation Noah’s Supporters’ Event and AGM

Posted in: Blog, Featured
Date posted: 23 July 2020

Photo by Sincerely Media on Unsplash

In keeping with the times, Operation Noah held its 2020 Supporters’s Event and AGM online. Around 60 people joined us for the event which was themed around ‘Climate Courage for the 2020s’.

The event took place on 15 July 2020 and our Keynote Speakers were:

  • David Pickering, Moderator, The United Reformed Church National Synod of Scotland
  • Bokani Tshidzu, Bright Now Campaign Officer
  • James Anthony, Coordinator for Climate Sunday

View a video of the keynote speeches here

Read the Chair’s Report from our AGM here

We also ran a number of workshops as part of the event and below are resources related to some of those workshops:

  • Read a briefing on the upcoming 2021 COP conference here
  • Read some notes from our workshop on how to deliver Operation Noah’s presentation here

PRESS RELEASE: New report calls on Churches to urgently divest from fossil fuels

Posted in: News
Date posted: 6 May 2020

Wednesday 6 May 2020

Contact James Buchanan: 07801 570 653 / james.buchanan@operationnoah.org

Report available: https://bit.ly/2yviELm

Interviews available / Quote from Rt Revd Dr Rowan Williams below

A new report from Operation Noah, the Christian climate change charity, is calling on Churches in the UK to urgently divest from fossil fuels in response to the climate emergency.

The report, ‘Church investments in major oil companies: Paris compliant or Paris defiant?’, shows the gap between the business plans of major oil companies and the Paris Agreement targets, which commits to limit global average temperature increases to well below 2°C compared with pre-industrial levels, and aims for 1.5°C.

The report draws on research from a variety of key sources, including Carbon Tracker’s Breaking the Habit report and the Transition Pathway Initiative (TPI) 2020 State of Transition Report, both of which demonstrate that none of the major oil companies are aligned with the Paris Agreement targets.

The report is published as several major oil companies are set to hold their AGMs, including Shell (Tuesday 19 May), BP and ExxonMobil (Wednesday 27 May) and Total (Friday 29 May). It shows that Shell and BP intend to increase oil and gas production by 38% and 20% respectively between 2018 and 2030, when global carbon emissions must fall by 55% by 2030 in order to limit the global average temperature rise to 1.5°C, according to the 2019 UN Emissions Gap report.

The report highlights that Shell and BP plan to spend huge sums on exploration and extraction of new reserves between now and 2030 ($149 billion and $71 billion respectively), when scientists are warning that the majority of known fossil fuel reserves must remain in the ground.

The report also draws attention to the fact that BP and Shell, which spend most among the major oil companies on lobbying against climate action, belong to trade associations such as the American Petroleum Institute that have successfully lobbied for weaker environmental regulation during the Covid-19 crisis. The report strengthens the calls for bailouts to support workers, but not oil and gas corporations.

Several UK Churches have already completed the process of divestment from fossil fuels, including Quakers in Britain, the Church of Ireland and the United Reformed Church. In others, such as the Church of Scotland, the Church in Wales and the Scottish Episcopal Church, Church bodies have made divestment recommendations, which should be acted on as a matter of urgency. Two Catholic dioceses in England and Wales have so far divested from fossil fuels, and the report calls on the remaining dioceses to join them – and 150 other Catholic institutions around the world – in making divestment commitments.

The 2017 Methodist Conference called for the Central Finance Board of the Methodist Church to divest from oil and gas companies whose business investment plans were not aligned with the Paris Agreement target of a global temperature rise well below 2°C by 2020. In light of the research outlined, the report calls on the Methodist Church to divest from all fossil fuel companies now.

The Church of England General Synod in July 2018 voted to begin divestment in 2020 from oil and gas companies that are ‘not taking seriously their responsibilities’ in the transition to a low-carbon economy, and complete divestment from those not on track to align with the Paris Agreement by 2023. The report argues that none of the major oil companies are taking their responsibilities seriously, and the divestment process must begin now.

James Buchanan, Operation Noah’s Bright Now Campaign Manager, said: ‘All major oil companies continue to spend huge sums on the exploration and extraction of new fossil fuel reserves, as well as lobbying against climate action. The evidence is overwhelming that none of these companies are ‘Paris compliant’. We strongly encourage Churches to demonstrate moral leadership at this key moment in history by divesting from fossil fuels and investing in the clean technologies of the future.’

Rt Revd Dr Rowan Williams, former Archbishop of Canterbury, said: ‘The current health crisis has highlighted as never before the need for coherent international action in the face of global threat. Can we learn the lesson and apply it to the global threat of climate change? To do so means taking practical and effective steps to reduce our lethal dependence on fossil fuels, and this report challenges the Churches to take these steps as a matter of urgency.’

Ends

Contact James Buchanan: james.buchanan@operationnoah.org or 07801 570 653

Notes for editors:

1. Operation Noah is a Christian charity working with the Church to inspire action on climate change. It works with all Christian denominations. http://operationnoah.org/

2. The report can be downloaded at: https://brightnow.org.uk/resource/church-investments-in-oil-paris-compliant-or-paris-defiant/.

3. The Methodist Conference in June 2017 called for the Central Finance Board of the Methodist Church to divest from oil and gas companies whose business investment plans were not aligned with the Paris Agreement target of a global temperature rise well below 2°C by 2020. https://brightnow.org.uk/news/methodist-church-takes-step-closer-divestment/

4. The Church of England General Synod in July 2018 voted to begin divestment in 2020 from oil and gas companies that are ‘not taking seriously their responsibilities’ in the transition to a low-carbon economy, and to complete divestment from those not on track to align with the Paris Agreement by 2023. https://brightnow.org.uk/news/church-of-england-votes-for-fossil-fuel-divestment/

5. The American Petroleum Institute has lobbied for weaker environmental regulation during the Covid-19 crisis. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/apr/17/polluter-bailouts-and-lobbying-during-covid-19-pandemic

6. Several European countries have recently spoken of the ‘duty’ of governments to build climate-resilient economies post Covid-19 https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/apr/28/un-chief-dont-use-taxpayer-money-to-save-polluting-industries

Operation Noah supports ‘Teach the Future’

Posted in: News
Date posted: 4 May 2020

As young people around the world have responded to the action initiated by Swedish schoolgirl Greta Thunberg with widespread school climate strikes, it has become increasingly clear that the climate crisis is a major concern for the young. They know that their education will have limited value in a world of the future if climate change is not tackled and here in the UK they are calling for the education system to inform them and prepare them.

At Operation Noah we recognise how important it is that young people have a voice on these issues and we are pleased to support the student-led campaign, Teach the Future.

April 2020 Newsletter

Posted in: Newsletters
Date posted: 25 April 2020

Read our April Newsletter

In this newsletter we pay tribute to the late Sir John Houghton, a keen supporter of Operation Noah from our inception. You are also invited to ask your church or Christian organisation to make a decision to divest from fossil fuels ahead of the next global divestment announcement for faith organisations and we have news of a new Bright Now report.

To receive future newsletters straight to your inbox, please use the email sign-up form on the left or click here.

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