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.
This past Sunday, we welcomed over 125 participants at our first annual Green Team Summit. We’re celebrating that at least 57 congregations were represented at the event! We were inspired by the Keynote Presentation by Veronica Kyle and the many workshop leaders who covered engaging topics on sustainability. We are grateful to The Temple for hosting us and the Rothschild Social Justice Institute. We are convinced this was the perfect way to launch GIPL’s 15th Anniversary this year! Plans are underway for the 2019 Green Team Summit, and we hope you’ll join us.
During this time of growing uncertainty, as climate catastrophe looms, and the inequality and dysfunction of social and political systems are exposed, it is more important than ever to be in a supportive community which inspires creativity, courage, and collective action. Continue reading
The Rev. Dcn. Leann Culbreath presents the grant check to Senior Warden Nikki Yarbrough (left) and Rector Rev. Dave Johnson (center).
Christ Episcopal Church in Valdosta was awarded a GIPL Energy Efficiency Matching Grant to support in-house energy efficiency upgrades. After receiving a GIPL energy audit, the congregation learned that there was significant energy loss in one of the oldest and most used buildings on campus. By adding insulation to the attic, the congregation is expected to save $1,000 per year in energy costs, and the payback time of the project will only be two years. Christ Episcopal was awarded $1,000 to complete the insulation upgrades.
The matching funds for this project were raised from church pledges, and the parish pledge drive dinner served as an opportunity to begin discussing Creation care as a means of expressing love of the Creator. The congregation hopes that this project will provide a concrete way to continue this discussion. In addition to the insulation upgrades, Christ Episcopal minimizes disposable dinnerware products, supports the development of a diocesan ecology center, and has dedicated green space with public access.
Congratulations to Christ Episcopal Church on their commitment to energy efficiency and Creation care! We look forward to seeing this congregation continue to grow in their efforts. The next matching grant application deadline is November 15, 2017. If your congregation has not yet received a GIPL energy audit, visit our website to sign up today!
Athens First United Methodist Church was awarded a GIPL Energy Efficiency Matching Grant to support lighting upgrades in the sanctuary to LED fixtures. They received $3,964 for these upgrades. This project will save approximately $1,000 per year in energy savings, and more when factoring in the savings on light bulb purchases.
After receiving a GIPL energy audit in the summer of 2016, Athens First UMC decided that upgrading their lighting fixtures would allow them to have more money to serve the community and church members. They also applied for a Georgia Power Commercial Energy Efficiency Rebate to help fund the project. The congregation is hopeful that these upgrades will demonstrate the financial and environmental benefits of using less energy.
Congratulations to Athens First UMC on their commitment to energy efficiency! We look forward to seeing how this congregation continues to increase their Creation care and energy efficiency efforts. The next matching grant application is November 15, 2107. If your congregation has not yet received a GIPL energy audit, visit our website to sign up today!
Decatur-area churches are coming together once again to offer this free community concert that celebrates Creation and our shared efforts to care for it. Co-hosted by Holy Trinity Episcopal Parish and its Green Team, this special event to be held on Saturday, September 30, is filled with spoken word and song so as to inspire reflection and action for the sake of the Earth and all inhabitants.
People of all ages from across the community are welcome to this free event to be held in the Nave of Holy Trinity Parish in Decatur. Talented students from Agnes Scott College, as well as folks from Decatur First UMC, First Baptist-Decatur and North Decatur Presbyterian churches, will be sharing their gift of music or spoken word.
Last year’s inaugural concert drew over 150 attendees enjoying over ten performances, including local singer/songwriters and acclaimed church choirs. The sanctuary was filled with the sounds of congregational song as well. This second annual gathering is sure to not disappoint. Come to be inspired and to sing along with new and old friends like!
This summer GIPL launched a new initiative that seeks to best serve African American churches in Georgia. The hope is that GIPL can learn how these particular faith communities can inform and participate in the shared responsibility to steward the earth through their particular cultural and theological perspective. We are excited to announce that Valerie Hill Rawls has joined the GIPL team to coordinate this initiative. Continue reading
St. Mark’s Episcopal Church in LaGrange was awarded a GIPL Energy Efficiency Matching Grant to fund a foam attic insulation project completed in March 2016. From the energy usage data already collected since the installation, the church is projected to have an annual energy savings of $600. St. Mark’s was awarded $2,748 for this energy efficiency project.
St. Mark’s incorporates Creation care into their weekly congregational prayers, and from that commitment, actively engages in other Creation care efforts. They recycle, encourage the use of reusable dinnerware, and open their facilities to environmental groups. The congregation has also committed to sharing cost savings with parishioners, and talking about how energy efficiency can save money and the environment both at home and church.
Congratulations to St. Mark’s Episcopal Church on their insulation project, and we look forward to seeing what further Creation care and energy efficiency efforts come from this congregation! The next matching grant application deadline is November 15, 2017. If your congregation has not yet received a GIPL energy audit, visit our website today to sign up!
Sightings from the Treehouse is an investigative blog series on climate change and the environment, from GIPL’s Power Wise Director, Bob Donaghue. You can read the first, second, and third blogs here.
The most significant impacts of global warming are found in the polar regions, since temperatures are twice as high there compared to the global average temperature. Increasing ice and permafrost melt threaten our globe in a variety of ways. I hope you will read the previous blog on rising temperatures since it forms the basis of our further exploration. It is quite simple: temperatures increase, ice melts and sea levels rise. The evidence is clear that global temperatures are rising and new records seem to be set each year. What is that doing in our polar areas, the earth’s natural air conditioner?
Global temperatures have increased about 1.9 degrees F since pre-industrial times, but have doubled in the Arctic during the same period due to a phenomenon called Arctic amplification. In 2016, Arctic temperatures were 6.3 degrees F above 1900s levels. This increased heating due to amplification is leading to tremendous loss of Arctic ice, both glacial and sea ice. This is particularly evident during the summer. The rate of Arctic ice melt is about 13% per decade.
The albedo effect is when white ice reflects the sun’s heat back into the atmosphere serving to cool the planet, but as ocean ice melts, the dark open water absorbs the sun’s heat and adds to the increased temperatures and thus sea level rise – a positive feedback. Note that “positive” does not mean good but that it simply amplifies rather than dampens (negative feedback) the force of the change. In this case, and with permafrost below, this is bad and could be catastrophic. Continue reading
First Baptist Church in Blakely, Georgia, was awarded its fourth GIPL Energy Efficiency Matching Grant to upgrade their lighting to LED fixtures. Many energy efficiencies have been incorporated already at this historic church in South Georgia following their GIPL energy audit a few years ago. Now the church is upgrading the old lighting in their kitchen, office and foyer to energy efficient LED fixtures. They received $1,191 in order to implement these lighting upgrades.
First Baptist Church of Blakely has committed to an ongoing LED project to upgrade all of the lighting in the church buildings. Last year, the church converted all of their lighting in the sanctuary to LED fixtures. Their next step is to install LED lights in the education building, and this year to the office, foyer and kitchen. This church has received 3 GIPL grants in the past to help with insulation, LED lighting upgrades, and WiFi thermostats for their buildings. Continue reading