Greening Our Church
As a means of expressing our commitment to our seventh principle: “Respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part,” the Green Action Committee is working toward Green Sanctuary Accreditation. This UU accreditation program is sponsored by UUA and is intended to galvanize congregation-wide green understanding and action coupled with social justice.
The GAC established contact with Green Sanctuary (GS) coordinator, Karen Brammer, and established a Winnipeg group at createclimatejustice.net. We have included GS topics within our GAC meetings and are currently Stage 2. Congregational Assessment. GAC/GS would like to roll Stage 3: Creating an Action Plan into the church planning exercise.
Building and Grounds
Garbage and Recycling
The Green Action Committee (GAC) takes responsibility for proper disposal of the waste produced at our church. Kitchen users and Winnipeg Harvest program, backed up by custodian, are responsible for emptying garbage and recycling containers into the appropriate city bins outside. Winnipeg’s curbside pickup cycle requires congregational members (or custodian, since Covid) set out garbage and recycling bins for pickup Mondays. We now manage 1 small and 1 large garbage cart and 1 small and 2 large recycling carts. Many members of the committee and congregation volunteer for this activity.
Recycling of small batteries, pop tin tabs: receptacles are in the kitchen and members of the Team oversee that containers are emptied, and contents recycled.
Kitchen users and Harvest are responsible for emptying the compost pails and compostable produce into designated compost bins outside. GAC members and other volunteers layer the compost with leaves, turn it, and, when mature, spread on flower and garden beds.
Gardens, landscape, rain barrels, bird feeders
GAC members have performed or coordinated activities to plant and maintain flower beds, install and fill bird feeders, trim and weed vegetation. Two more rain barrels were purchased this year and installed. Capturing rain water provides moisture for the flowerbeds and vegetable garden. GAC coordinated a group to clean up damaged and fallen branches from the fall ice storm in early December 2019.
Window hits by birds have been an on-going concern. In consultation with Properties Committee, members of the GAC installed a pilot zen curtain on one sanctuary window for assessment.
Raised vegetable beds
GAC, Green Sanctuary (GS) and the Social Justice Team (SJT) constructed, installed, and maintained raised vegetable beds in the NE corner of our back yard. Members used the lasagna gardening method to layer our own beautiful compost, yard waste, and new soil to create three large beds. Following the companion planting recommendations, vegetables such as tomatoes, squash, beans, peppers, and others were planted.