Today’s guest blogger is Bella Hoffner-Martin, a congregant of Congregation Bet Haverim in Atlanta, where she just celebrated her bat mitzvah last weekend. Bella now has become a full-fledged member of the Jewish community which includes embracing the moral responsibility for one’s own actions; eligibility to be called to read from the Torah and lead or participate in a minyan.
When young teens are presented for bat mitzvah in the Jewish community, it is customary that they write a reflection on a portion of the Torah. Last Saturday, Bella used the occasion of her ceremony to inspire the congregation gathered to live differently among G-d’s creatures. The GIPL Team thought her reflection was great inspiration for this Earth Day weekend! Continue reading
Gary Garrett is a GIPL Board member and attends Kirkwood United Church of Christ in Atlanta. In honor of Earth Day, the GIPL blog features Gary’s reflection on the impact of his own church’s commitments to stewardship and sustainability. Kirkwood UCC won the GIPPY Light award in 2014 for excellence in worship and education for implementing their denomination’s Mission 4/1 Earth program. Continue reading
Over the last several years, universities, foundations and the faith community have led the way in eliminating investments in the fossil fuel industry. They represent 54 percent of new commitments. Since December 2016, institutions with assets of 6 trillion dollars have made commitments to divest from fossil fuel investments. This includes 688 institutions and 58,000 individuals according to the Go Fossil Free website. Two notable organizations making commitments are the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the World Council of Churches. About 28 percent of the commitments are from religious institutions. Over half the commitments come from outside the USA. The fossil fuel divestment movement is the fastest growing divestment movement in history.
Atlanta’s first community-based solarize program officially launches Thursday, April 12, on Atlanta’s Westside at Monday Night Brewery’s Garage from 7 to 8:30pm. The launch follows months of work, and just in time for Earth Day, the Solarize Atlanta Coalition chose Creative Solar as the installer for all residential roof projects and Hannah Solar as the installer for all commercial roof installations. GIPL’s Executive Director Rev. Kate McGregor Mosley shared her excitement for this campaign, “This community-led initiative is working hard to bring solar to a diverse array of neighborhoods across the city of Atlanta, and ensure that clean energy is accessible to a cross-section of Atlanta’s residents, places of worship, nonprofits and business.” Continue reading
David Miron-Wapner shares a powerful message that was delivered at The Temple in Atlanta on March 23 during Shabbat service. David was in Georgia to attend the Eco-Symposium on Theological Education hosted by Columbia Theological Seminary. David is Board chair of The Interfaith Center for Sustainable Development based in Israel.
As we anticipate Pesach, I offer you an eco-spiritual message that the story of Pharaoh and our liberation from Egypt parallels the situation facing humanity today in confronting the climate crisis. Continue reading
St. Mary’s Catholic Church and St. Mary’s Catholic School in Rome are two of 11 members of the Catholic Pilot Project. This project, whose full name is the “Laudato Si’ Action Plan Pilot Project,” came to life when the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta decided to run a pilot project to support this group of parishes and schools in making environmental improvements. “Laudato Si’: On Care for Our Common Home” is Pope Francis’ encyclical about caring for the earth and each other.
Riverstone Church Improves Sanctuary Lighting with LED
Riverstone Church of Kennesaw completed a Power Wise energy audit in 2017 which included energy conservation measures (ECMs) for LED lighting upgrades and WiFi thermostats. The 48,500-square foot facility’s annual energy savings could reach $11,055 should all ECMs be implemented. During this grant cycle, the church applied for their first GIPL grant to upgrade their sanctuary can lights with LED. They requested $6,108 (full cost $12,216) to replace 108 existing 250 watt incandescent lamps in the church sanctuary with 108 26 watt LED lamps, which will have an estimated $3,270 annual energy savings. The grants committee viewed the project favorably at their December 7, 2017 meeting and awarded the church their full request. Reverend Kate McGregor Mosley and Codi Norred from GIPL presented the award check to church leadership on February 1, 2018.
St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church in Kennesaw is one of 11 members the Catholic Pilot Project. This project, whose full name is the “Laudato Si’ Action Plan Pilot Project,” came to life when the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta decided to run a pilot project to support this group of parishes and schools in making environmental improvements. “Laudato Si’: On Care for Our Common Home” is Pope Francis’ encyclical about caring for the earth and each other.
Temperatures rise, ice melts and sea levels rise. That is the basic science behind the conclusion in the new book, The Water Will Come: Rising Seas, Sinking Cities, and the Remaking of the Civilized World, published in 2017 by Jeff Goodell. Goodell is contributing editor to Rolling Stone Magazine and author of several environmental books on climate change. Jeff visited numerous cities in the US, Europe and Asia that are facing the impacts of sea level rise now and more seriously in the future. Continue reading
Saint Anne’s Episcopal Church in Atlanta Awarded $10,000 GIPL Matching Grant for Energy Efficiency Project
During the December 2017 grant committee meeting, the committee was very impressed with the completed and on-going energy efficiency projects Saint Anne’s Episcopal Church and Preschool had completed within the past couple years. Two projects in particular are its solar panels and upgrading its insulation. 10 kWh solar arrays became operational in 2016 and its projected energy savings in 2017 are expected to be $1,600. They have also upgraded insulation in its administrative offices and day school. The insulation in the administrative offices was assisted by a $2,500 matching grant in 2016 from the GIPL Power Wise Program. In their 2017 grant application, they requested $10,000 (the maximum award) to upgrade all preschool lighting to LED as recommended in their April 4, 2016 Power Wise energy audit.