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We are happy to have signed on as one of the first organizational partners of the Jewish Climate Change Campaign “to take small actions and make big change.” We are the first synagogue in our region to have joined the Campaign.
We invite you to join us in taking the Campaign pledge at www.jewishclimatecampaign.org. Climate Change challenges us to live better and walk more responsibly on the Earth and asks how we can use the wisdom of Jewish teaching and the collective passion and ingenuity of the Jewish people to inspire a vision for the future.
Hazon Seal of Sustainability Projects
As part of our congregation’s long term commitment to sustainability,
Kol Ami is partnering with Hazon to receive the Hazon Seal of Sustainability, which certifies that a Jewish organization has committed to meet a set of criteria marking it as a good world citizen with regard to its food and environmental practices, treatment of animals, and impact on climate change. Our selection to participate in this initiative signifies that, along with two dozen other Jewish organizations, we are emerging as a national leader in the realm of Jewish sustainability.
After completing an audit of our food and energy impact, the Shomei Adamah Environmental Stewardship committee selected three focus areas.
Ongoing Efforts to Reduce Waste
Congregation Kol Ami has transitioned away from purchasing styrofoam to renewable and recyclable paper and plastic products. However, we recognize that many of these products are still being thrown into trash rather than being recycled. Through messaging in the bulletin, listserv and onsite, we aim to increase reuse and recycling at the synagogue and at home. We also will investigate the feasibility of switching to compostable service ware (plates, cups and utensils).
Ongoing Education and Advocacy about Sustainable and Just Food Choices (Eco-Kashrut)
Over the years of our Hazon Community-Supported Agriculture (CSA) program, we have educated our community about sustainable food systems and animal welfare. We encourage members to participate in the advocacy work of our Social Action committee through Act Against Hunger, an initiative of Mazon, the Kehillah of Old York Road and Area Relief Agencies.
“To Bee or Not to Bee:” Honeybees and the Environment
This initiative is a multifaceted program aimed to raise awareness in our community about the central role of honeybees in the food system, their plight, and actions we can take to protect and “keep” them.
For the past few years, we have also been able to sell local, raw, and delicious honey to dip your apples and challah during the High Holy Days! For those of us who purchased a jar (or two), we had the pleasure of knowing what LOCAL honey tastes like.
At the 2009 Union for Reform Judaism Biennial, member synagogues were encouraged to learn more about COEJL and support this highly relevant non-profit. COEJL deepens the Jewish community’s commitment to the stewardship of creation and mobilizes the resources of Jewish life and learning to protect the Earth and all of its inhabitants. The organization is working to bring Jews around the country together to work toward a better future on the common ground of a healthy environment, green jobs and a secure energy future through action, education and a personal pledge. Like our brethren URJ synagogues, Kol Ami has pledged our support to COEJL and hopes you will do the same