Since its 2018 launch, the Congregational Energy Efficiency Challenge (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.
SCIPL’s CEEC began in 2018 to help churches reduce their environmental impact, become more energy efficient, and save money. Congregations who enter into the CEEC are eligible to receive grant funding for their environmental initiatives. The challenge educates congregations about earth care and energy efficiency. It also motivates congregations to take action! The CEEC is especially helpful to church’s in underserved communities, because energy efficiency helps lower monthly bills.
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. We will review your application, and work alongside you to make the changes! Select churches are eligible for grant funding.
Questions? Don’t know where to begin? Contact us! email@example.com
Our CEEC program helps to reduce congregations’ financial burden and environmental footprint. These changes free communities of faith from some of their financial burdens. 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- Retrofitting lights and replacing outdated lightbulbs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 in Columbia 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
- In 2018, Gethsemane Baptist Church in Greenville 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 in Greenville replaced 53 windows with energy efficient models at a total cost of $26,411 with $3,000 reimbursed through the CEEC
- In 2019, Forest Lake Presbyterian Church in Columbia purchased and installed LED bulbs throughout their church
- St. Thaddeus Episcopal in Aiken changed 768 lamps to LED light bulbs in their church and school buildings
- At Trinity Worldwide Ministries in Charleston, we partnered with The Sustainability Institute to perform energy assessments of three buildings. We completed safety and energy efficiency upgrades including air sealing, insulation, smoke/carbon dioxide detectors, and we swapped conventional light bulbs with LED’s
All of the participating congregations signed SCIPL’s Creation Care Covenant, which asks congregations to improve environmental stewardship, create “green teams”, incorporate environmental education into programs and worship, maintain vegetable gardens, use energy-efficient transportation, and buy 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.