Five Congregations Awarded $1,000 Each For Leadership on Sustainability

Feb 28, 2017 | In the News, IPL News Highlights, Press Releases, What's New



February 28, 2017


Five Congregations Awarded $1,000 Each For Leadership on Sustainability

Interfaith Power and Light Announces ‘Cool Congregations’ Challenge Winners as

Faith Communities Prioritize Energy Efficiency, Renewables, and Sustainability


SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., February 28, 2017 —Interfaith Power & Light (IPL) is pleased to announce the inspiring five winners of Cool Congregations Challenge, which is a united effort by religious congregations across the country to address global warming by reducing their carbon footprint and by becoming inspirations to their members and communities. Winners were selected from five categories: Cool Planner, Sacred Grounds Steward, Energy Saver, Renewable Role Model, and Community Inspiration.


“The Cool Congregations Challenge winners inspire and show us what is possible. We awarded Catholic Sisters creating sustainable farms in New York, a church in North Carolina that rallied 15 other churches to work together to weatherize low-income homes, and a synagogue in Maryland that swapped out 477 light fixtures. These winners are creating jobs, saving money, and saving Creation. There are dozens of excellent applications, but the five winners really stand out for the creativity and impact of their projects,” said The Rev. Canon Sally Bingham, founder and president of Interfaith Power & Light.


The Cool Congregations Challenge is an annual contest held by IPL that is open to congregations all over the country, from every faith tradition. Judging criteria included: a well-defined project with measurable benefits for the climate, creativity and resourcefulness in executing the project, congregant engagement in the project, and community inspiration. The faith communities represent many different religious backgrounds, but all share a common mission – to be good stewards of Creation by addressing global warming as a moral imperative. They do this through activities undertaken in their own facilities and on their grounds that reduce their overall carbon footprint.


The Cool Congregations Challenge shows that people of faith are united by concerns about climate change and are taking action – with or without support of government policies. The winners provide strong moral role models for their communities, and their activities have a ripple effect with people in their own homes. The five $1,000 top prize-winners are listed below. There are an additional 15 runners up. Read their stories at http://www.coolcongregations.org/cool-congregations-winners-2016/


Listed below are the five $1,000 prize-winners

Community Inspiration

Justice in a Changing Climate

Community United Church of Christ

814 Dixie Trail, Raleigh, NC 27607

Contact: Gary Smith, smithgk@mindspring.com, 919-961-8925


Energy Saver

The Bright Idea Project

Temple Shalom

8401 Grubb Road, , Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815

Contact: Susan Zemsky , szemsky@templeshalom.net, 301-587-2273


Renewable Role Model

CCCUCC Goes Solar

Congregational Church in Cumberland

282 Main Street, PO Box 247, Cumberland, ME 04021

Contact: Lalla Carothers, lallacarothers@mac.com, 207-409-2145


Sacred Grounds

Agricultural Land Preservation

Sisters of St. Joseph

1725 Brentwood Road, Brentwood, NY 11550

Contact: Sister Karen Burke, CSJ, burkek@csjbrentwood.org, 917-353-5135


Cool Congregations Planner


Manchester United Methodist Church

129 Woods Mill Rd., Manchester, MO 63011, Manchester, Missouri, 63011

Contact: Rev. Phil Estes, phil.estes@manchesterumc.org, 636-200-4706


Interfaith Power & Light is mobilizing a religious response to global warming in congregations through the promotion of energy conservation, energy efficiency, and renewable energy.


Twitter: #CoolCongregations @interfaithpower
Facebook: facebook.com/interfaithpowerandlight









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