The Creation Care Alliance of WNC Helps Congregations Save Money With Climate Solutions-
Like they do on most Sundays, the Jubilee! Congregation in downtown Asheville sang sacred songs, read from scripture, and took in the sermon from their Rev. Howard Hanger on January 13. But on this day, something different happened: when the pastor repeated the beloved sacred passage “Let there Be Light,” the sanctuary filled up with beautiful LED light.
As one of the pilot congregations for the Creation Care Alliance’s LED Renewal Project, Jubilee! was celebrating the completion of their LED lighting upgrades. By replacing 160 bulbs and nine light bays in their church building with LEDS, Jubilee! will save an estimated $2,119 and reduce their estimated energy consumption by 14,250 kilowatt hours in this year alone. That’s the equivalent of 10 metric tons of carbon or offsets, and about the same as planting and growing 167 trees for ten years.
With the generous support of the Asheville Merchants Fund, an affiliate of the Community Foundation of WNC, and Lime Energy, the LED Renewal Project is supporting six pilot congregations as they care for the planet through energy efficiency. These congregations are not only changing light bulbs – they are saving money, caring for the planet, and offering an example of stewardship and health to their communities. The project will allow each congregation to save an average of $200 per month each, and a total of 153,107 kW of energy combined. And by providing hope at a time when so much of the news about the environment is not hopeful, the effort is having a spiritual impact beyond the walls of each place of worship. “Let there be Light” indeed!