The Green Leaf

Hallelujah! Solar-powered church

December 6th, 2014
Newly installed solar photovoltaic system at Central  Union Church in Honolulu. Unveiling and celebration will take place after the 9 a.m. service on Sunday, Dec. 7. Photo courtesy Central Union Church.

Newly installed solar photovoltaic system at Central Union Church in Honolulu. Unveiling and celebration will take place after the 9 a.m. service on Sunday, Dec. 7. Photo courtesy Central Union Church.

Central Union Church in Honolulu is unveiling its solar photovoltaic system at a celebration at 10:15 a.m. on Sunday, Dec. 7.

The church, through Distributed Energy Partners, installed 336 Sun Power 345-watt panels on to the Women's Building and Parrish Hall on its campus. The panels are expected to produce 179,318 kilowatt hours of electricity each year, saving the church about a third of its electricity costs.

That translates to a reduction of 254,273 pounds of carbon emissions, 445 barrels of oil and 14,590 pounds of nitrous oxide pollution.

There will be a ribbon cutting, followed by a short presentation and tour of how the solar panels work.

In case you didn't know it, there is actually a certification for cool congregations, awarded by a group called Interfaith Power & Light, which says its mission is to be "faithful stewards of Creation by responding to global warming through the promotion of energy conservation, energy efficiency and renewable energy."

Central Union Church became one of 20 churches nationwide to be recognized as a Certified Cool Congregation in the summer. It's cool to see churches taking an active role in sustainability.

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