Incentives to "Go Green"

If you're interested in "greening" your house of worship, please read on. 

For those wishing to do a household assessment, scroll down to the Documents section.

     Thanks to a grant from the Harris Fund of the East Tennessee Foundation & a grant from the Episcopal Province IV Environmental Ministry, GINI is offering incentives to area congregations in the amount of $500 to be applied toward energy efficiency and resource management.

     Savings from those energy efficiency measures will be used to "pay it forward." Congregations are asked to return the $500 incentive to GINI within one year so we can jump-start another congregation/organization.

      Six churches in the TriCities have received incentives from GINI's "Cool Congregations" project so far.  St. John's Episcopal Church, St. Mary's Catholic Parish, Munsey Memorial United Methodist Church, Holston Valley Unitarian Universalist Church in Gray, First Presbyterian Church Elizabethton, and Hopwood Memorial Christian Church have implemented strategies and already returned their incentive money, enabling GINI to offer the incentive to other organizations upon request.

     Not-for-Profit Organizations (see list below) may also request an energy and environmental assessment, followed by a formal application for the $500 financial incentive to implement their energy conservation projects. As an example, Rocky Mount State Historic Site has implemented several energy-saving strategies since their audit was conducted. In the past year, they replaced air handlers with more energy-efficient models, replaced toilets and fixed leaking sinks in the restrooms, replaced fluorescent and halogen lighting with LEDs, and are using solar-powered lights to illuminate the sign by the entrance.

Application Instructions for GINI's "Greening Grant" project provide the details of participation.

Energy and Environmental Assessments

   The Green Interfaith Network offers a free "green audit" -- an on-site energy and environmental assessment -- of a congregation's or not-for-profit's physical plant. Within a few weeks of completing the on-site review, GINI's comprehensive report outlines possible energy and other conservation strategies. In return for the free green audit, GINI requests that the organization review the report and draft an action plan to implement one or more recommendations to save energy and conserve natural resources. That action plan can be returned with an application for the $500 incentive. If the organization accepts the incentive, GINI requests that the $500 be returned within one year, based on the realized cost savings, so GINI can offer support to other congregations and organizations in our region.

Download  GINI Request for an Energy Assessment

GINI Energy Assessment reports from not-for-profit organizations:

     If you would like to learn more, please contact us!

Energy Assessment conducted at Summit Leadership Foundation

Households can also improve their energy efficiency. One of the most direct ways we can affect our budget is through reducing wasted energy in our homes. Links provided below can help homeowners, renters, and leasing agents improve their daily energy use.

Documents for households:

First Presbyterian Church of Elizabethton:  Please download and use #3 below for your household energy audit.

General Earth Care Reminders:  The Mindful Consumer

1)  Introductory Letter

2)  Do-It-Yourself Home Energy Education:  TVA  &  Appalachian Power

3)  GINI's Household Energy Checklist 

4)  Household Hazardous Waste Home Check List

5)  Items to include in a Basic Emergency Supply Kit

Please feel free to ask questions at GreenInterfaith @ gmail (dot) com.

For those who like to analyze data:

If you're interested in recording your actual use, your household's electricity records are available online:

This Household Data Table (for monthly-annual use) allows you to record your actual monthly use and also any changes you make during each month. An Excel spreadsheet can also be used to record and track your household's monthly utility bills on your computer:     GINI_Household_energy_data.xls

St. John's Episcopal was the first church to receive GINI's $500 jump-start for energy efficiency.
In the picture above, GINI members are shown
how the congregation has
cut their energy use. Jon Lau, facilities manager at St. John's, also shared ideas for managing efficiency upgrades.

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