Forgotten to recycle any newspapers or tin cans recently? Feeling guilty because you neglected to carbon offset your flight to somewhere, anywhere, outside England this summer?

The Roman Catholic Church is at hand with a new line in "green confessions" to help eco-sinners to find forgiveness.

Dom Anthony Sutch, the Benedictine monk who resigned as head of Downside School to become a parish priest in Suffolk, will be at the county's Waveney Greenpeace festival this weekend to hear eco-confessions in what is thought to be the first dedicated confessional booth of its kind.

Vested in a green chasuble-style garment made from recycled curtains, and in a booth constructed of recycled doors, he will hear the sins of of those who have not recycled the things they ought to have done and who have consumed the things they ought not to have done.

Father Sutch tries to practise what he preaches but has turned the heating down so low at his church of St Benet's that at least one parishioner has fled to the warmer care of a neighbouring priest for winter services.

He told The Times: "It is not, I hope, blasphemous to do this. I do not think it is. It is just an attempt to make people conscious of the way they live. The Church is aware of green issues and of how aware we have to be of how we treat the environment.

"I know the Pope has now set up his own airline, but I am told the Vatican will be planting trees every time it flies. I do think the way we treat our environment is important.

"There is a huge amount of greed in the West. We have to be aware of the consequences of how we live."

Father Sutch said that he tried "very hard" to live a green lifestyle but admitted that it was difficult. "I try not to turn on my heating but people come and stay with me and demand it. I get attacked for having a cold church. I have cut my electricity bill by 30 per cent.

"I try to grow my own vegetables and I buy my food from the local area. But when I travel to London I have to drive my car 30 miles to the station to catch the train because I cannot get a bus. My parish is spread out so I have to drive around it by car. It can be difficult to be green. I am hoping to find out about more that I can do at the fair this weekend.

"I've had one or two comments about abuse of the confessional. One or two people have said, 'Father, is this quite right?' Luckily, more people see it as an excellent idea. As with all these things, we have to look in the mirror and see what we could stop consuming ourselves."

Being green has become the new "socially correct" form of behaviour for many, resulting in dishonesty as Western consumers exaggerate their eco-friendliness to keep up with their neighbours. A new poll for Norwich Union found that nine out of ten people tell "little green lies" about how much they recycle and how little they consume. More than half think that unethical living is as socially taboo as drink driving.

The Waveney Greenpeace confessional concept is based on the Earthly Sins booth which has appeared at the Glastonbury festival and in the lobby of theatre performancs by the comic Rob Newman. A secular construct, Earthly Sins asks penitents to sign a pledge that they will switch to renewable energy or ethical banking.

At Waveney, Rupert Read, a local Norwich Green councillor, and Steve Peck, a Suffolk actor, will be standing by to offer post-confessional advice. Mr Read told the Eastern Daily Press: "It is a bit of a laugh but there is a serious underlying point. By doing this we hope people will think a bit more about what they might be doing to make their world a better place.

"I imaging people will be confessing to things like, 'I have bought a new car even though I didn't need one', or 'I flew to Australia last year'. I have come up with some penances, such as making a donation to a green charity or telling ten other people what you have done."

Graham Elliott, the fair organiser, said: "We are not expecting people to change their lifestyles dramatically, having stepped into the booth. We think they will treat it in a light-hearted way. If people are concerned about certain aspects of their lifestyles there will be information on hand, whether it is reducing energy use, renewable energy, reducing your travel impact, or ways to grow your own produce."

The annual fair is the country's biggest fundraising event for Greenpeace, raising more than £15,000. The fair, run entirely by volunteers, is at Hulver Farm, St Michael South Elmham, near Bungay, from 11am to midnight on Sunday.

Attractions include three stages of music, one of which has a sound system powered by a member of the audience riding an exercise bike. There will also be organic food, biodegradable beer cups and composting toilets that work without chemicals. Those wanting to get into the spirit of it by leaving their car at home can take the train to Halesworth, from where there is a free bus service to the fair. Bus passengers also get a £1 discount on entry.