BUUF Climate Action Update, 6/1/2023

The World Economic Forum reported in Oct of 2021, “Unless CO2 emissions drop significantly, global warming will make the Amazon barren, the American Midwest tropical, and India too hot to live in by 2500, according to a team of scientists. ‘We need to envision the Earth our children and grandchildren may face, and what we can do now to make it just and livable for them’”. Boise Mayor Lauren Mclean has challenged us to take “bold action to address climate change.”

We are answering the call to climate action by setting our congregational goal to a 45% reduction in our carbon footprint by 2030 and to be carbon-neutral by 2050. 

The BUUF Congregational Footprint helps us measure where we are as we start to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions and when used continually will document our progress to our climate action goals. The three parts of the congregational footprint are organized by ownership of the footprint.  The BUUF Board is responsible for the footprint of the building and grounds. The people who come to BUUF are responsible for their transportation footprint and each member and friend is responsible for their own household carbon footprint. 

As of June 1, 2020, the data is now available for two parts of our BUUF congregational footprint, our building and grounds and the transportation to and from BUUF using data from 2019 as our baseline. 

  • The building and grounds footprint is  32.26 metric tons (mt) of CO2e/year.  The largest portion of the footprint is 23.8 mt of CO2 from natural gas heating.  The 2030 reduction goal is 14.97 mt/year.
    • If we  switch to 100% clean electricity  and replace our natural gas HVAC system with an electric equivalent, the footprint will be 7 mt/yr of CO2e
  • The transportation footprint is 15.8 mt/yr of CO2e and  the 2030 reduction goal is 7.11 mt/yr of CO2e.
    • The mix of in-person and zoom attendance of our services this year has a footprint of 7.13 mt/yr of CO2e

Please see BUUF Carbon Footprint   for more in depth information about the carbon footprints.

The BUUF Board authorized the switch to 100% clean electricity which reduced the footprint to 30.77 mt/yr and commissioned Musgrove Engineering to investigate alternatives to natural gas HVAC systems that meet these four goals:

  1. Reduce carbon footprint and eliminate use of fossil fuels.
  2. Increase energy efficiency.
  3. Increase individual space comfort and control.
  4. Phased approach to replace equipment over time.

The Board is now discussing the results of the engineering analysis.

Please see boiseuu.org/justice/climate-action-team for more information.