Stewards of the Bay: Lifestyles of Stewardship


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Stewards of the Bay: Lifestyles of Stewardship

  1. 1. LIFESTYLES OF STEWARDSHIP:A Toolkit for Congregational Action
  2. 2. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XIIIThe Health of the BayFor churches in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed the call to be Stewards of the Bay has never been more important.In 2005, when Stewards of the Bay was first published, the algal blooms that kill fish and create dead zones in the Bay.Chesapeake Bay was in poor health. Progress restoring the A few algal species can produce chemicals that are toxic tohealth of the Bay has been slow, and now, almost five years humans. Symptoms of exposure to certain toxins can includelater, the latest Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) State of the skin and eye irritation, and confusion.4 Sea level rise, anotherBay report1 indicates that there has only been a slight improve- impact of global climate change, could destroy miles of habitatment in the health of the Bay. In the past five years, the Bay along the Chesapeake shoreline and flood thousands of acreshas improved by one point according to the CBF’s 100 point of land primarily in Dorchester County, MD.scoring system moving from a 27 in 2004 to a 28 in 2009,indicating that the Bay is ecologically unhealthy. We have along way to go to reach CBF’s goal of a score of 40 by 2010,indicating that the Bay is improving. In addition, Chesapeake Eco-Check, the annual report Bay Information Resources:card issued by the National Oceanographic and AtmosphericAdministration (NOAA) and the University of MarylandCenter for Environmental Science (UMCES) gave the Bay agrade of C- in 2008. According to the report, this is an indica-tion that the Bay is in “moderately poor health.” ChesapeakeEco-Check states that the overall health score only increasedby 1 percent in from 2007 to 2008 and that Bay-wide healthhas only modestly improved over the past five years, increasingfrom 36 percent in 2003 to 43 percent in 2008.2 Nitrogen and phosphorus pollution remain the leadingthreat to the health of the Bay. Two of the top sources of thesepollutants include runoff from urban and suburban areas andair pollution from automobiles, factories, and power plants.Air pollution particles attach to water molecules, enteringthe water cycle where they are deposited in local streams andwaterways. These pollutants result in algal blooms that cloudthe water. When the algae dies and decomposes, it uses muchof the oxygen in the water, making it next to impossible forother organisms to survive in areas thick with algae. Toxiccontamination is another threat to the Bay. There has beenno improvement in the level of toxic contamination in the 1 See Stewards of the Bay page 7; Download state of the Bay reports at http://www.Bay since 2005. Scientists have found PCBs, herbicides, and of oil and its byproducts in nearly every sediment 2 Download the report on-line and review a detailed report of your watershed regionsample collected in the Bay.3 at 3 Nikki Davis. 2008 State of the Bay. Chesapeake Bay Foundation. April 2009: http:// Climate Change Impacts the Bay: 4 For more information see the Center for Disease Control Website http://www.cdc.Rising temperatures in the Bay coupled with nitrogen and gov/hab/ and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources http://www.dnr.state.phosphorus pollution will lead to more frequent and harmful
  3. 3. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XIVLiving out Our Call: Minimizing Our ImpactsANSWERING THE CALL WITH EFFECTIVE ANSWERING THE CALL WITH ENERGY EFFICIENCYSTORMWATER MANAGEMENT AND RENEWABLE ENERGYStormwater pollution is responsible for approximately 19 Air pollution from coal fired power plants poses another seri-percent of the nitrogen and phosphorus pollution in the ous threat to the Chesapeake Bay. One-third of the nitrogenBay.5 Churches can help to reduce the amount of nitro- that finds its way to the Bay each year is nitric acid depos-gen, phosphorus, and other pollutants reaching the Bay ited from the air after it is emitted from power plantby implementing a stormwater management plan for smoke stacks and vehicle tail pipes. Air pollution fromtheir church building and grounds. The types of power plants is also the primary source of mercurystormwater management plans most appealing to that contaminates the Bay’s fish and those of us whochurches are referred to as low impact develop- eat those fish. Carbon dioxide, another byproductment (LID) plans. The purpose of LID plans is to of burning fossil fuels for electricity, is also con-prevent polluted runoff by conserving or restor- tributing to the warming of God’s planet anding the natural aspects of God’s land so that it can changing local climates across the globe, includingstore and filter rainwater like it did before the church the community around the Bay. Churches can limitbuildings were built.6 their contribution to air pollution and climate change by using less electricity and by utilizing and supporting renew- able energy technologies.How to Conserve Water and Save EnergyEFFECTIVE STORMWATER require minimal maintenance, and don’t require outsideMANAGEMENT technical support. Water collected in rain barrels can be used to water the church lawn and gardens, thus savingCHOOSING A PROJECT the congregation money on water bills. Rain barrelsThere are a variety of LID projects churches can are most effective when combined with other LIDimplement including rain barrels, permeable pave- techniques like rain gardens, pervious pavement,ment, rain gardens, vegetated buffers, and green and green roofs. Regardless of whether you pur-roofs. It’s important to determine the right proj- chase a rain barrel or construct your own, theect for your congregation. In making this deci- first step is to determine the barrel size you willsion, you will need to consider many different need to drain water from the roof of the church.factors including funding sources, your church A 60-gallon barrel can provide runoff storagelocation, the project’s space requirements, slope from a rooftop area of approximately 215 squareof the land, the depth of the water table, soil type, feet for 0.5 inches of rainfall. This means that tomaintenance requirements, and congregational aesthet- provide runoff storage for the entire roof of a church,ics. Congregations can accomplish small scale projects like a congregation may need to install multiple rain barrels. Mul-installing rain barrels and small scale rain gardens with volun- tiple rain barrels can be linked together to provide additionalteers and little cost. However, some projects will require the stormwater storage. For larger roofs, consider placing two orfinancial and technical support of outside agencies. three linked barrels at each downspout.RAIN BARRELS 5 “Stormwater.” Water Quality. 2009. Chesapeake Bay Foundation. Oct. 27, 2009Installing rain barrels on church grounds is an inexpensive churches can manage rooftop rain runoff, conserve water, 6 For more information on how buildings and parking lots impact the Bay seeand save money. Rain barrels are easy to install and manage, Stewards of the Bay page 14
  4. 4. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XVDo it yourself: Building Your Own Rain Barrel the sites where you will install the barrels by removing anyBuilding your own rain barrel is inexpensive and relatively easy existing splash block, leveling the area, and using cinderblocksto do. All of the necessary tools and materials can be found at or bricks to elevate the barrels. Barrels should be raised twoyour local hardware store. Keep in mind that all rain barrels feet off the ground to enhance the gravity flow of water intoshould be equipped with a screen to control mosquitoes, other a hose. Next, adjust the downspout at each site. Remove theinsects, and debris. Rain barrel covers should be removable but bracket that fastens the elbow and the lower section of thechildproof, and an overflow outlet must be provided to handle downspout. Measure the height of each barrel and the surfacerain runoff from large storm events. it will sit on and mark the downspout, allowing 1 to 2 inches for the elbow to sit above the barrel. Using a hacksaw, cutConstructing or purchasing a barrel: the downspout according to your measurements. Reinstall theReady-made rain barrels are easy to install and come in a elbow and then the downspout clamp. Direct overflow intovariety of designs, and most hardware stores sell them. Local a landscaped area at least four feet away from the building’swatershed groups, non-profit organizations dedicated to the foundation and check to ensure the barrel is level and stable.stewardship of a watershed area, might provide rain barrels Rain barrels do not require very much maintenance. Askfree of charge, host building workshops, or offer them for pur- members of your congregation to take turns cleaning thechase. Detailed instructions on building a simple rain barrel screen and gutters monthly to remove any debris. Disable theare offered by the following organizations. Review these web- rain barrel each winter. Before the first hard freeze, open thesites and choose the format that makes the most sense to you bottom and drain and disconnect the hoses, flush, drain, andand your congregation: secure the barrel from winter winds. Allowing water to freeze in the barrel may result in cracks and other damage. Down- load a photo guide to installing a rain barrel at: www.arling- pdf/barrel_new08.pdf rain_barrel_installation_instructions.pdf Environmental Design Program http://www.dnr.state. RAIN GARDENS Congregations that install rain gardens on church grounds can help protect local waterways and the Chesapeake Bay by Rainscapes/pdf/aa_rainbarrel_assembly.pdf. capturing and treating polluted runoff from roofs, parking lots, and other impervious surfaces before it can even leaveInstallation and Maintenance: church property and allowing it to slowly filter back into thePlan to install rain barrels at your congregation’s next build- ground. In fact, rain gardens can remove up to ninety per-ing and grounds work day. To install each barrel, first prepare cent of nutrients and chemicals and up to eighty percent of sediment from rain water that would otherwise end up in our waterways and allow thirty percent more water to soak into the ground, compared to conventional lawns.7 There are Resources: two types of rain gardens churches could choose to install: self contained and under-drained. Under-drained rain gardens Environmental Protection conducts a series of are technologically complex because a drain to move excess free “Make-and-Take” Rain Barrel Workshops water into a conventional storm sewer pipe system must be for county residents (and others). Find the next installed and connected, usually requiring the assistance of a one on their calendar of events at http://www. landscape architect. They are typically installed in cases where infiltration would be undesirable (areas where the garden is calendar.htm. too close to the water table, or impossible (areas with heavy clay soil). Self contained rain gardens are simpler in structure offers Rain Barrel Workshops. Find the next one on because they rely on the natural draining power of the soil their calendar of events http://www.gunpowderfalls. org/calendar-of-events-1.html 7 “Rain Gardens 101.” 2009. The Ground Water Foundation. Oct. 27, 2009.
  5. 5. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XVIand don’t require the installation of drains or pipes connecting vides two simple tests to help you determine the soil type andthe garden to the sewer system. They are also less expensive to infiltration rate of your desired location. To find the tests, gobuild and congregations may find that they can install them to If your chosenon their own with a few volunteers. The following instructions site does not pass the test, it doesn’t necessarily mean that youwill help you to design and build a self contained rain garden can’t put your rain garden there. However, this does meansat your church. your project has become more technologically complex and will require soil amendments or outside assistance. ContactChoosing a Location: your local watershed group. Find yours at: www.dnr.state.Designing an effective rain garden requires some con- planning. First, you must determine where tolocate the garden. You cannot construct a rain gar- Designing and constructing your garden:den over buried utility lines, so call your utility The ideal rain garden is roughly twenty percent thecompany to determine where they are located on size of the roof and or pavement area drainingchurch grounds and immediately rule out that into it. For example if you decide to locate yourlocation. Also, rain gardens should be at least garden between your church parking lot andten feet from the building’s foundation and the road, the ideal rain garden would be 1/525 feet from any well head or septic tank the size of the parking lot. However, any sizeand its drain field. Ideally, the location of rain garden will help to protect God’s Cre-your septic tank and its drainage field will ation by reducing stormwater runoff into thebe located in the church blueprints. Con- Bay. In order to hold rainwater while it seepstact your church administrator or the general into the ground, your rain garden should becontractor who built your church to obtain the built in to a depression about 6 inches deep.blueprints. Rain gardens should not be planted in However, to maximize infiltration, design your rainareas where water pools for long periods of time after a garden with a long flat bottom, making the hole widerain storm. Do not put a rain garden in a location that will and shallow rather than deep and narrow. Incorporate nativeimpact your trees by damaging the roots in the construction shrubs, perennials, and flowers that are suitable to the soil andprocess or inundating them with too much water. sunlight conditions of your garden. Install plants that have a Now that you know where your rain garden cannot go, you high tolerance for phosphorus and nitrogen, and can withstandcan begin to decide where it actually can be located. Observe lots of water for short periods of time, but do not require lotsthe church grounds while it is raining. Watch to see where of water all the time. Consider plants that will attract wildlifewater is flowing from and where it is flowing to. You will want such as birds and locate your rain garden between the source of the rain- Building a rain garden is a great opportunity for fellowshipwater runoff and the destination, but closer to the source of and should be a congregation-wide event. Makethe runoff to slow it down and minimize the water’s erosive sure everyone in the congregation knows whenpower. Ideally, you will want to plant your rain garden in a you will begin building the rain garden and issmall depression formed on a natural slope. However, the invited to participate. Ask members to bringslope should be no more than 12 percent, meaning that the any gardening tools or equipment needed.area you choose should be no steeper than a ten degree angle. The best time to build a rain garden isOnce you have a location in mind, you will need to make sure during the spring or fall. First, you will opportunity orthat the water table is no less than two feet from the surface need to define the borders and shape ofand test the soil and the rate of infiltration (the amount of the garden. Next, remove any turf grasstime it will take the water to seep into the ground). Heavy clay or other unwanted vegetation. Then,soils are not good for rain gardens because water will not seep dig out the depression. If your site didin to the ground quickly enough. Water that is left standing not pass the infiltration test, you may con-for too long can become a breeding ground for mosquitoes sider adding soil amendments to improve the rate at which theand harm your plants. The Ground Water Foundation pro- -
  6. 6. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XVIIommends adding a mixture of 25 percent compost or leaf lit- participating nurseries throughout the state. There ister, 50 percent coarse sharp sand, 25 percent topsoil.8 Finally, no limit on how many coupons can be used and theybegin planting, remembering to water the new plants thor- can be printed directly from the web site. This site alsooughly right after planting. Native plants should not require has guidance for selecting and planting trees for yourany extra fertilizer, herbicides, or pesticides. For the first two location as well as a tool to calculate the benefit of theyears, while the plants are becoming established, the garden trees planted. If yourwill need regular watering and weeding. Use this as a time congregation has the space, consider planting a memorialfor fellowship as well, and have a few members get together grove. Ask members to donate a tree in honor or memoryweekly to do a little weeding. Have an annual church-wide of a loved day to add extra mulch, remove plants that have died,and trim back plants as necessary. conserves results in less polluted water entering the Chesapeake Bay. Fix all leaking faucets. Invest in low flowMore information on Storm Water Management faucet aerators, low flow toilets and waterless urinals. for directing water from the downspout to the barrel and find get additional price quotes for pre-constructed rain barrels. roofs.html DEP/Rainscapes/barrels.htm garden templates and suggests suitable native plants to ENERGY STEWARDSHIP assist in the rain garden design process. http://www. ENERGY EFFICIENCY htm There are many opportunities for congregations to reduce energy use and improve the health of the Bay. Congregations can take of Natural Resources (DNR), one large tree can on projects such as installing high efficiency windows, insulating eliminate 5,000 gallons of stormwater runoff each year, water heater tanks, adequately caulking around windows, using and well placed trees can help reduce energy costs by programmable thermostats, using energy efficient lighting, and 15 to 35 percent. PLANT and BE COUNTED is a installing low-flow faucet aerators. With all of these options, it can call to Marylanders to plant trees this fall and register them online. This State program offers a $25 coupon 8 Rain Gardens Technical Guide: A Landscape Tool to Improve Water Quality Department of Forestry. to purchase any native tree costing $50 or more from
  7. 7. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XVIIIbe difficult to know just where to begin. A good first step is to get Selecting an Auditor:an energy audit. A professional auditor can let you know which Because churches have different energy needs and a differ-options will make the most difference in your church. Another ent energy use pattern than many homes or businesses, it’s afactor congregations should consider is cost. Congregations that good idea to look for an auditor who has experience auditingcommit to substantially reducing energy use can cut utility costs church 25-30 percent. For instance, if a Maryland congregation pur- The following is a list of local (Maryland) companies thatchased energy efficient products such as exit lights, light bulbs, provide professional audits to congregations. It was providedcentral air conditioning units, computers, and furnaces they by ENERGY STAR for Congregations, but does not, however,would save an estimated $1,934 each year and $17,594 over the reflect an endorsement from ENERGY STAR or the Nationallifetime of the products, minus the cost of the purchase.9 Council of Churches.FIRST STEPS: GET AN ENERGY AUDIT 202-355-6364 (phone), 202-331-3759 (fax)Preparing for the Audit:In order to get the most out of your congregation’s energyaudit, prepare ahead of time. Gather up utility bills from atleast the past year, but bring more data if you have it. If you 202-262-7722 (phone)cannot find past statements, contact the utility company,which should be able to help supplement your records. Ask a 847-941-6695 (phone) 866-892-3849 (fax)couple of members and staff to do a walkthrough of the build-ing before the audit. Make a list of any problems you find orany questions that arise and share your list with the auditor.Look for condensation around windows and air condition- 410-225-5040 (phone) 410-225-5070 (fax)ing units, and make a note of any drafty rooms. Be sure toremove obstructions from around water heaters, air condition- units, and furnaces so the auditor can easily access this performance-energy-star/homeowners/find-contractorDuring the Audit: LIGHTINGBring a schedule of regular church activities so you and the One of the easiest ways for congregations to reduce electricityauditor can look for trends in energy use and can determine use, limit their contribution to harmful air and water pollu-when and where your church uses the most energy. It’s a good tion, and reduce operating cost is to install energy efficientidea to have a couple of church leaders and members knowl- lighting technologies.edgeable about different areas of the congregation’s ministrywalk through the church buildings with the auditor. They willbe able to provide insight to the auditor about the specifics ofyour congregation’s energy needs and help to develop the audi- Resources:tor’s suggestions into an overall vision for the congregation. The Greater Washington Interfaith Power and Light (GWIPL) provides free energy assessments to congregations9 These estimates are based on generalized information assuming congregations each in Prince George and Montgomery Counties. These assess-have two computers, ten exit lights, one furnace, one central air conditioning unit,fifty light fixtures and pay the average price for electricity (as determined by the ments can help you to identify some easy first steps to mak-Energy Information Administration (EIA) ing your congregation more energy efficient, and can helpepa/fig7p4.html) and natural gas (as determined by EIA your congregation prepare for a professional energy auditdnav/ng/ng_pri_sum_dcu_SMD_a.htm). These assumptions are incorporated intoEnergy Star calculators for each product. Run the numbers for your congregation at by giving you an idea of what questions to ask and helping your congregation to focus your stewardship goals. Contact
  8. 8. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XIXCompact Fluorescent Light Bulbs (CFLs) can end up costing congregations additional money. Install-CFLs use 75 percent less energy than incandescent bulbs and ing occupancy sensors in strategic areas of church spaces, likelast about 10,000 hours, close to ten times longer than incan- restrooms and hallways, can significantly lower your church’sdescent bulbs. Replacing just one Incandescent bulb with a energy consumption.CFL will prevent 262 lbs of carbon dioxide pollution fromentering the atmosphere.10 They also produce 75 percent less Purchasing and installing Occupancy sensorsheat than incandescent bulbs and can help keep church spaces First, decide where to install occupancy sensors in your in the summer months. At home, Maryland residents can Occupancy sensors provide the most energy savings whensave almost 700 kWh of electricity and more than $90 a year used in areas where use is infrequent or unpredictable. Class-simply by replacing 5 of the most used light fixtures in rooms, restrooms, offices, copy rooms, hallways, andthe home with qualified models; plus ENERGY STAR storage closets are optimum locations for occupancyqualified replacement bulbs last about nine years with sensors. Next, choose the appropriate occupancy sen-standard use. sor for your space. Make sure the sensors you purchase are compatible with the electrical requirements of thePurchasing and installing CFLs rooms where they will be installed. Consider factors suchCFLs come in all shapes and sizes and can be purchased at as the shape of the room to determine what type of sens-almost any retail outlet or hardware store. Look for low ing technology you need. Occupancy sensors use eithermercury models. Since Mercury is toxic to Creation infrared or ultrasonic technology. Passive infraredand people the less that leaches into the environ- sensors detect temperature changes in a room, andment through manufacture and disposal the bet- work well where the entire room is within theter. Make sure you buy the right bulb for each sensor’s field of view. Ultrasonic sensors usesocket. You can do this by looking for the high frequency sound and can detect motionwattage replacement value on the box.11 around corners. You can purchase a deviceYou will see things like “60 watt replace- that utilizes both forms of technology.ment.” Choose CFLs that replace the These are more expensive, but willwattage of bulbs you currently use. decrease the risk of the lights turningInstall CFLs the same way you install off while the room is still occupied.incandescent bulbs. To achieve the You can purchase occupancy sensorsgreatest energy savings, replace lights for as little as $15 at a local hardwareused most frequently with CFLs first. store.When a CFL burns out (several years Once you’ve purchased the sensors,from now) make sure it is disposed of install them in the in the appropriateproperly, by taking advantage of local recycling options. For location for each room. Do not install sensors behind a coatmore information, check out or rack, door, book case, or any other object that will block sensor. Choose a centralized area so that the lights are activated as people enter the room. The best locations will depend onOccupancy sensors the shape of the room, expected locations of occupants, andOccupancy sensors detect motion and only light rooms when the potential for detecting false positives (people walking inthey are being used. Throughout the week and especially on the hall outside the room). Follow the installation directionsSundays, the facilities at the average church are used by many for each device you purchase and consult a professional if fur-people. This can make conserving energy a challenge, espe- ther assistance is needed. Lastly, set the time delay, the settingcially when the use of spaces like restrooms, hallways storage that turns lights off after a period of time where no motion isclosets, and copy rooms is unpredictable. The sheer numberof users adds to the difficulty of implementing a consistent 10 See NCC’s Carbon Reduction Campaign information on CFLs at www.conservation plan. A light left on in a classroom overnight or restroom that is lit all day regardless of use, wastes energy, 11 Energy Star Choose a Light Guide: unnecessary pollution into the atmosphere, and html
  9. 9. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XXdetected. To maximize energy and financial savings by mini- chased the right signs from a local hardware store, you’re readymizing the time lights remain on, using electricity, when the to install them. Installation is simple and you should be ableroom is no longer being used, choose the lowest setting that to install an LED exit sign if you know how to install a lightwill still allow occupants to engage in low-motion activities switch. If you have any questions, consult a professional.without being left in the dark. Try five minutes first and thenevaluate this timeframe based on parishioner feedback.12 ENERGY STEWARDSHIP AS FINANCIAL STEWARDSHIPLED Exit Signs Most congregations can cut energy costs by up to 30 per-All public buildings must be equipped with exit signs to cent by taking low-cost measures and investing stra-light the way out of a building in case of a fire or other tegically in efficient equipment, facility upgrades,emergency. These important signs are lit 24 hours a and maintenance.14 For instance, if a Marylandday, 365 days a year. Exit signs that are lit ineffi- congregation purchased energy efficient prod-ciently can do a lot of damage to God’s creation ucts such as exit lights, light bulbs, central airand your congregation’s budget. One exit sign conditioning units, computers, and furnacesusing incandescent bulbs consumes over 350 they would save an estimated $1,934 eachkilowatt hours of electricity a year, increas- year and $17,594 over the lifetime of theing utility costs by approximately $28 per products, minus the cost of the purchase.15sign, per year. Compare that to a light- In addition, the Environmental Protec-emitting diode (LED) exit sign which uses tion Agency estimates that installingjust 44 kWh of energy per year and con- occupancy sensors can reduce energy bytributes only $4 to annual utility costs. LED 30–90 percent in restrooms, 30–80 percentexit signs range in price from $15 to $65, and in hallways, 45–80 percent in storage areas,bulbs will not need replaced for 10–25 years. 40–46 percent in classrooms and 13–50 percent in offices.16Purchasing and installing LED Exit Signs Individual parishioners can also practice financial steward-First, determine what kinds of exit signs are currently being ship while caring for Creation by using energy efficiently atused.13 Even if you are using exit signs lit by CFLs, you should home. Maryland residents who replace all their lights withstill consider switching to LED signs, which use three times CFLs can save 1000 kwh and $130 on the electric bill eachless energy than exit signs lit by CFLs. Next, Consult local year. Adding blow in wall insulation can save 700kwh andbuilding codes or building officials to determine what the spe- $90 in annual utility costs, while upgrading attic insulationcific requirements for exit signs in your area are. There may be can save 300 kwh and $40 in annual utility costs. Sealing ductspecific color or battery backup requirements. Find out if your work will reduce electricity expenditures by approximatelycongregation’s exit signs have integrated emergency lighting, 650 kwh, saving $85 in utility costs each year, while repairingbackup lighting that illuminates halls when the power goesout. If so, you can replace it with a combined LED exit sign 12 See NCC’s Carbon Reduction Campaign information on Occupancy Sensors at lighting unit or install an emergency light sepa- 13 If you need help see the Energy Star fact sheet on LED Exit signs www.energystar.rately. Also, find out what voltage you need. LED signs that gov/ia/business/small_business/led_exitsigns_techsheet.pdfare compatible with 120 volt or 277 volt power are available. 14 Congregations: An Overview of Energy Use and Energy Efficiency Opportunities.Many models have variable voltage and will operate on both Energy Star for Congregations 12/3/2009 levels. Look for LED exit signs where LEDs are wired 15 These estimates are based on generalized information assuming congregationsin parallel rather than signs with LEDs wired in series because each have two computers, ten exit lights, one furnace, one central air conditioning unit, fifty light fixtures and pay the average price for electricity (as determined byif LEDS are wired in a series, when one LED burns out the the Energy Information Administration (EIA) sign will cease to be illuminated. You may decide to epa/fig7p4.html) and natural gas (as determined by EIA a LED retrofit kit rather than a new LED sign. If you dnav/ng/ng_pri_sum_dcu_SMD_a.htm). These assumptions are incorporated into Energy Star calculators for each product. Run the numbers for your congregation atdo, check to make sure that it provides adequate illumination, know that when the light eventually burns out it could 16 See NCC’s Carbon Reduction Campaign information on Occupancy Sensors atbe replaced with an incandescent bulb. Once you have pur-
  10. 10. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XXIceiling leaks will reduce electricity expenditures by 600 kwh Power Purchase Agreements (PPA): Power Purchasesaving approximately $80 in utility costs each year. Install- Agreements (PPA) are good options for churches who wanting a low-flow shower head saves energy and water by to produce clean energy on their church property, but arereducing electricity expenditures by approximately 250 worried about the cost and maintenance of installingkwh, saving $30 in electricity expenses annually.17 clean technologies. Cost can be prohibitive especially when many of the incentives for installing cleanPRODUCING CLEAN ENERGY energy technologies like solar panels or small windClean energy uses renewable sources of energy turbines are given only in the form of tax creditssuch as wind and solar, rather than fossil fuel- for which churches are ineligible. However, thebased energy that pollutes God’s air and water. financial challenge does not have to be insur-Congregations can use clean energy to meet mountable. PPA’s allow congregations to enjoyall or at least part of the congregation’s energy the benefits of clean energy without having toneeds. Utility companies often set various rates provide upfront capital to fund the project ordepending on time of day and usage. Congrega- undertake the maintenance of the technology. Intions may want to install small solar or wind systems a PPA, the company installing the device will own,to offset energy used at higher electric rates, thereby reduc- operate, and maintain the device on the church property,ing their overall bill. Interested congregations should talk to selling the electricity produced to the church at a fixed pricean architect, engineer, and their utility company about the that is less than or equal to the their normal electricity rates.possibility of producing clean energy on church grounds. The company receives the tax benefits and passes the savings Solar: On a sunny summer day, Maryland receives about on to the congregation. To enter into a PPA, your congregation196,000 Gigawatt hours of solar energy, more than all the will need to agree to two things. You must give the companyelectric power plants in the State would produce in a year.18 access to church property to install, operate, and maintain theCongregations and people of faith should seek out ways to use generating facility, and you must agree to purchase the powerthis amazing gift from God. Consider installing solar panels generated on site. If your congregation is interested in pursuing this option for clean energy, the first steps will be to research and choose a company you want to enter in to an agreementused for the operation of all electrical systems, including lights, with. A representative from the company will work with youcooling systems, and appliances, and is becoming increasingly to determine whether or not solar power can feasibly be gener-affordable. If your congregation is planning a new building, ated at your church. If you are leasing your church buildingconsider utilizing passive solar techniques. For example, place or plan to move to a new location before the terms of yourlarge glass windows on the south side of the building so the agreement expire, a power purchase agreement might not besun’s rays can pass through to heat and light the room. Also the right choice for your congregation.choose hard, dark-colored flooring to trap the heat and keepthe room warm. 17 “EmPower Maryland.” Energy Facts and Programs. Maryland Energy Administra- Wind: Although wind energy systems involve a significant tion 12/9/2009. investment, they can be competitive with conventional 18 “Solar Energy.” Maryland Facts and Programs. 2007. Maryland Energy Adminis-energy sources when you account for a lifetime of reduced tration. 11/16/2009. altogether avoided utility costs. The length of the paybackperiod, the time before the savings resulting from your systemequal the system cost, depends on the system you choose, the Resources:wind resource on your site, electric utility rates in your area, For more information on purchasing and installing cleanand how you use your wind system. Before installing a wind energy technologies in your church see:energy system, find out if your church is located in an areathat would benefit from wind power and find out the zoning for installing a small turbine. Renewable Energy at
  11. 11. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XXII Learn More: - SUPPORTING CLEAN ENERGY IN MARYLANDsite at Congregations can ensure that clean energy sources con- The Power of Judicatories: Judicatories, regional reli- tribute to the local power grid (the wiring and infrastruc-gious organizational bodies, can assist congregational ture that carries electricity into homes and businesses)efforts to practice good stewardship of the Chesapeake by purchasing Renewable Energy Credits (REC)Bay. They can use capital improvement funds or cre- (representing one megawatt (MWh) of renewableate low-interest clean energy and energy efficiency energy). Congregations can purchase Renewableloan programs to set aside funds for clean energy Energy Credits from the Greater Washingtoninvestments in congregations. Judicatories Interfaith Power and Light (GWIPL) as part ofcan also help to reduce the price of installing a cooperative, non-profit project. Congrega-on-site renewable power by pooling the pur- tions decide what percentage of their energychasing power of several congregations, help- they want to offset with renewable energying them invest in on site renewable energy credits. By purchasing RECs, congregationsresources. are choosing to support wind power or land fill In addition, judicatories can help to negotiate gas. The money paid for the credits pays for theone large contract at the judicatory level for multiple transfer of power generated by clean sources to thecongregations to secure low prices for renewable energy grid. The more RECs purchased, the more clean energythat one congregation alone could not secure. This pooling will be added to the local energy grid. Clean energy offsets areprocess will differ depending on whether or not the judica- becoming increasingly affordable. A typical congregation cantory owns the property of churches within its region. If the offset 100 percent of their energy for $500 to $2,500 morejudicatory owns church properties, the process will be sim- per year. To purchase renewable energy credits from GWIPL,pler because the power purchases of congregations are already download an order from The judicatory will only need approval from con- Maryland congregations can also purchase RECs for 50 togregations throughout the region to support clean energy. If 100 percent of their electricity by signing up for a clean energyeach church owns its own property, congregations throughout contract with Clean Currents, a Maryland-based Clean Energythe region must first agree to pool their purchasing power in Company. To learn more about purchasing wind energy RECsto one contract, managed by the judicatory, and then negoti- from Clean Currents check out the terms of using their joint purchasing power to support index.php/Business. Keep in mind that most churches will beclean energy. considered a business rather than a residential customer. To
  12. 12. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XXIIIfind out about similar national programs and compare prices, the health or ecological well-being of the Chesapeake Bay.use the chart put together by the U.S. Department of Energy Supporting clean energy from the grid now will help providefound on line at the capital needed to build new clean energy power plants,buying/buying_power.shtml?state=MD. helping to ensure sustainable energy sources and continued Congregations that invest in clean energy help send the improvement in the Bay’s health for generations to come.message that energy use does not have to negatively impactFinding FundingDENOMINATIONAL FUNDING STATE AGENCIESJudicatories and other religious organizational bodies can offer The Maryland Energy Administration offers a variety of grantscapital improvement loans that can be used to install clean for renewable energy technologies including solar water heat-energy technologies like solar panels, geothermal heat pumps, ing systems, photovoltaic systems, and geothermal heat pumps,or small wind turbines. They may also provide loans to fund as well as grants for the installation of wind energy systems.stormwater management plans like building rain gardens or Currently, Maryland Energy Administration is still decidinginstalling a green roof. For information on relevant denomina- whether or not churches will qualify for these programs. Calltional loan programs see: 1-800-723-6374 and let them know that you congregation isgrbchurchloans.php interested and wants to apply. For more information, go to GOVERNMENTSWhen your congregation decides to undertake a project to REGIONAL WATERSHED GROUPSimprove the energy efficiency of your congregation or imple- The Chesapeake Bay Trust (CBT) provides grants to individ-ment a stormwater management plan, you should contact ual churches, as well as to local watershed groups and localyour local county government. They may provide financial government agencies, to implement projects to improve theassistance in the form of grants or rebates. The Montgomery health of the Bay. If your congregation is unable to coordinateCounty Department of Environmental Protection will pro- a partnership with your county or watershed agency, you canvide funding for stormwater management projects, including still apply for a grant through the Chesapeake Bay Trust. Seeinstalling rain barrels, rain gardens, and green roofs through for more information.their Rainscapes Rewards program. - NATIONAL Unfortunately, most county incentives The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) offersfor energy efficiency are tax incentives and do not apply to two grants, the Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Fund and thechurches. However, your county might be able to recommend Chesapeake Bay Small Watershed Grants Program, for water-a certified energy auditor. shed protection. These grants have been awarded to local
  13. 13. Lifestyles of Stewardship: A Toolkit for Congregational Action APPENDIX n XXIVwatershed groups working in conjunction with congrega- core mission of the church. You can raise awareness for yourtions to implement stormwater management plans on church efforts with a minute for mission or a special announcementgrounds. For more information see during worship before collecting a special offering for stew-plate.cfm?Section=Browse_All_Programs. ardship ministries, explaining our call as Christians to care for Creation, and sharing with members the goals your groupFUNDRAISING WITH YOUR CONGREGATION has set for the congregation. Be sure to provide details aboutFundraising within your congregation will be easier if your the impact your actions will have on God’s Creation and thecongregation has made stewardship of God’s Creation a church budget. Finally, consider setting aside the offering onchurch wide priority. Consider signing the Stewards of the Earth Day Sunday for stewardship of Creation projects aroundBay Affirmation found at the end of this document. Having a the church. Choose projects that will also save the congrega-signed commitment will encourage church leadership to allo- tion money. Once members see the benefits they will be morecate funding in the congregation’s budget. In addition, it will likely to continue to support Creation care efforts with theirencourage members to donate to support what is viewed as a time and money.Finding Technical SupportLOCAL WATER SHED GROUPS church grounds. Find out more about their projects at www.These organizations will often work with congregations to To find a watershed group in nearwrite grants to state, regional, and national funders, and can your congregation go to provide advice when it comes to determining the right wshd_orgs.html#2.project for your congregation. They have the staff and resourcesto fundraise and have either the expertise to provide technical COUNTY GOVERNMENTSsupport or can recommend a landscape architect or engineer When your congregation decides to undertake a project towho specializes in LID to help get your project off the ground. improve the energy efficiency of your congregation or imple-For example, the Spa Creek Conservancy, a watershed group ment a stormwater management plan, you should contactbased in Annapolis, has worked with several local churches your local county government. They should be able to answerto fund and implement stormwater management plans on any permitting questions that arise.Where To Go From HereBECOMING A STEWARDS OF THE consider making a commitment to being God’s Church in aBAY CONGREGATION way that respects and cherishes God’s Creation. For ideas onNow that you have learned how your congregation can care how to engage church leadership and members of your con-for God’s Creation in the Chesapeake Bay, please read and gregation, see Stewards of the Bay page 8.reflect on the Affirmation for Eco-Justice. As a congregation,