SCIPL’s Congregational Energy Efficiency Challenge (CEEC) helps houses of worship reduce their environmental impact, become more energy efficient, and save money. Since its 2018 launch, the CEEC has saved houses of worship close to $600k by reducing energy usage over 5,000 MWh.* This is equivalent to the CO2 sequestration of planting more than 60,000 trees.
Any house of worship in South Carolina is eligible to apply with priority given to those with higher energy burdens, especially those located in underserved communities. Congregations who enter into the CEEC are eligible to receive grant funding to implement their environmental initiatives. The challenge educates congregations about energy efficiency and other aspects of earth care often motivating them to take action!
Apply. Take action. Make change.
1. Think about which environmental actions and upgrades your church would like to make.
2. Fill out the CEEC application below.
3. If selected, SCIPL will provide a free energy audit and work with your congregation to create a plan for renovations.
Questions? Don’t know where to begin? Contact us! email@example.com
Our CEEC program is focused on reducing congregations’ financial burden and environmental footprint through reduced energy usage. Participating congregations complete an energy audit and consultation with SCIPL leaders to develop a plan for increased energy efficiency in their facility. SCIPL works alongside congregations to provide guidance, educational outreach, and funding opportunities. Past congregational actions included:
- Retrofitting lights and replacing outdated lightbulbs
- HVAC upgrades
- Weatherizing and insulation
- Window films
- Solar panels
- Starting a congregational garden
Since launching the program in 2018, seven houses of worship have completed energy efficiency upgrades resulting in a projected lifetime savings of over $500,000 and 2.5 million kWh! Hear some successes below:
- Brookland Baptist Church (2020) Columbia, South Carolina – completed the installation of energy-saving, LED lighting in the church’s Christian Learning Center in 2020. This will have a projected lifetime savings of $334,174 & 2,907 MWh; Equivalent to carbon savings from planting ~34k trees or 2260 tons of carbon
- Forest Lake Presbyterian Church (2019) Columbia, South Carolina – Purchased and installed LED bulbs throughout their church
- Gethsemane Baptist Church (2018) Greenville, South Carolina – Replaced more than 370 light bulbs with LEDs, air sealed the building envelope, installed motion switches in bathrooms, and installed Nest programmable thermostats, for a total cost of $2,900 with $2,000 reimbursed through the CEEC
- Village Church Greenville, South Carolina – Replaced 53 windows with energy-efficient models at a total cost of $26,411 with $3,000 reimbursed through the CEEC
- St. Thaddeus Episcopal Aiken, South Carolina – Replaced 768 lamps with energy-efficient LED bulbs throughout their church and school buildings
- Trinity Worldwide Ministries Charleston, South Carolina – SCIPL partnered with The Sustainability Institute to perform energy assessments on three buildings. Through the CEEC, Trinity Worldwide Ministries was able to afford air sealing, insulation, smoke and carbon dioxide detectors, and energy-efficient LED lightbulbs
All of the participating congregations signed SCIPL’s Creation Care Covenant, which encourages congregations to become environmental stewards, by creating “green teams”, incorporating environmental education into programs and worship, maintaining vegetable gardens, using energy-efficient transportation, and buying environmentally friendly disposable products.
Faith leader Sharilyn B. Robinson of Trinity Worldwide Outreach Ministries said, “The work that was done at our ministry has been very impactful. The biggest and most important being a reduction in the energy bills. Since the completion of the work, we’ve seen one bill reduced about 54% and the other about 63%. With these savings we are able to increase spending in activities geared towards the community”
The CEEC also encourages members of the congregation to make changes at home! Pastor Duncan, Senior Minister at Gethsemane states: “Going Green has really inspired some of our church members who are now becoming more conscious and considering making changes in their homes”
*Estimated lifetime savings over 20 years.
Please contact SCIPL at firstname.lastname@example.org.