Environment Group

St Mark’s has a dedicated Environment group, established in 2002 following a Lent course on Creation Care.

Our aims are :

We aim to raise awareness in the church of the unprecedented impacts of climate change for God’s Earth and for our global and generational neighbours. We are seeking ways that the church, and individual members of the congregation, can seek to live out our faith in a way that counters this injustice and so bring about God’s Kingdom on and for the earth. This can be through prayer, practice and political engagement.

  1. When does the group meet?

    St Mark's Environmental Group meets every month on 1st of the month to fast and pray about climate change. We are now part of Zero Carbon Harrogate and meet every 2 months.

  2. Who is in the group?

    Currently the group has about ten members from all walks of life, but each with a concern through their faith for the environment.

  3. Join the group

    Contact Michelle either by email stmarkskingdomlife@gmail.com or phone 544528.

  4. What has the group achieved so far?

    Jan 2018 Resurrected Bites Café to be launched- a PAYF café using intercepted foodwaste

    Q4 2017 all lighting (except one very high light fitting) switched to low energy

    Nov 2017 Permanent seed swap box installed in church

    Oct 2017 environmental resources library set up at St Mark’s

    Oct 2017 Rev Guy Donegan-Cross launches an environmental St Mark’s community

    Q1 2017 secondary glazing installed in the Rose Room

    Jan 2016 Zero Carbon Harrogate launched by some members of St Mark’s Environment group https://www.zerocarbonharrogate.org.uk/

    Dec 2015 Riding Lights production of Baked Alaska shown at St Mark’s followed by audience writing messages on bunting to our MP relating to people’s thoughts about climate change. This was delivered to the MP by a young member of our church.

    In Jun 2015 a group went to the "For the Love Of" march in London.

    In March 2015, we wrote to all of the parliamentary candidates to voice our concerns about climate change and to ask questions about the environmental policies of each party. The letters were signed by around 100 members of the congregation.

    In June 2014 at church services adults and children wrote individual letters to Andrew Jones MP to express their concerns about climate change. For those who missed the opportunity then go to http://www.hftf.org.uk

    In 2014

    Reduced hot water temperatures in the toilets by putting thermostatic controlled mixer taps

    Recycle all plastic, paper and cardboard

    Recycle office supplies like ink cartridges etc, which the congregation can use, the money raised goes towards HG1000

    Ongoing implementation of low energy light bulbs and secondary glazing in church

    Fitted an intelligent heating control panel to more effectively reduce our carbon footprint

    St Mark's PCC vote unanimously to offset their  2013-14 carbon footprint. Read about it here. Carbon Offsetting May 2014

    Adopted the Environment Policy  in October 2013

    Since 2013 -  Eco Tips shared with our community via our newsletter and seed and plant swap started.

    21st April 2012 - Let there be light! Eco Event

    10th December 2012 - Solar Panels installed on the church roof.  Click here to find out how we went about it.

    January 2011 - Eco team course run  www.ecoteams.org.uk/

    November 2010 - A Rocha Christian conservation charity adopted as a mission partner, with particular links to A Rocha Lebanon www.arocha.org/lb-en/index.html

    October 2010 - Share the Earth Weekend Event for the community to mark the launch of the Diocesan carbon reduction strategy

    July 2010 - Preservation of the church pond

    June 2010 - Walk to Church Sunday

    2010 - Compost bin established


Michelle Hayes

Contact Michelle Hayes
St Mark’s Church, Leeds Road,
Harrogate, HG2 8AY
Email: stmarkskingdomlife@gmail.com
Tel: 01423 544528.



What does loving Jesus have to do with the Environment?

God declared creation good before we humans even entered the scene. The earth is so important to God that his very first commandment to us included taking care of the earth and animals.

Jesus said “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

Our neighbours include the people who live downstream from our water pollution, downwind from our air pollution, and downhill from our soil erosion. Our neighbours are those who not only live next door to us or in the next street or city but who live on the far side of the planet. They are those are affected by our use of carbon rich fuels, the way we recycle or don’t. Our neighbours also include our descendants and the descendants of our neighbours.

The good news is that we can all make a difference by making  small changes in our lifestyle if we just take a bit of extra time to think about what we are doing and see it as part of our mission for Jesus.

The Anglican Church’s fifth mark of mission is to to strive to safeguard the integrity of creation and sustain and renew the life of the earth so how do we do that?

Click below to find some links and ideas to guide you in making small changes in your lifestyle which will make a difference to the environment. Make it part of your mission to share the changes with neighbours and friends.


  1. The Artic Declaration


    What if an Arctic sanctuary was created, where no oil drilling or destructive fishing was allowed? There’s a growing global movement calling for just this to happen – would you sign up to find out more.


    Click here to find out why the world needs an Arctic Sanctuary



    Bumblebees are an important and cherished component of our biodiversity. Several species are threatened with national extinction. Why not visit their site and see what you can do to save this much-loved insects that pollinate our crops and wildflowers.



    There is now pretty convincing evidence that hedgehogs are declining severely in Britain. Worryingly, they seem to be doing just as badly in the wider countryside as they are in our towns and cities. The picture is complicated and it seems likely that several different factors are at play.




    Butterfly Conservation's recent news that we are seeing a significant population fall since the 1970s should be a chilling wakeup call to us all. Butterflies and moths are one of the most threatened groups of wildlife. In the last 100 years, nearly 70 species have become extinct (4 butterflies and 65 moths). We can do something to help by changing the way we garden. For further information of what to plant to save these beautiful insects go to the Butterfly Conservation website. 

  2. Fracking


    Whatever your views on fracking it is important to know that it is being used to justify up to forty new gas power stations and that extracting new fossil fuel deposits. This is likely to make climate change worse. It will also require tens of thousands of new wells in Lancashire alone, scarring the natural landscape wherever shale gas is exploited. It is coming to Yorkshire soon. Click here to read the Consultation documents on the Joint Plan for Minerals and Waste on Yorkshire County Councils website.

    According to international experts, we need to keep two-thirds of known fossil fuels in the ground to avoid ‘runaway climate change’ – the point at which global warming becomes irreversible. We need strong government investment in clean, renewable energy rather than locking us into a high carbon future for decades to come. To have your say then why not sign one of the many petitions online, or write to our M.P. Andrew Jones to express your concerns.

  3. Sharing, swopping & recycling

    Sharing and Recyling

    If you need a tool or equipment for an occasional DIY or garden job, save money, storage space and resources by borrowing with these websites

    Or if you borrow from a friendly neighbour, offer to return the favour with your tools




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