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Save your church money and save our planet

By Alexander Carpenter
Whether or not one believes that humans affect the climate, or our water, or that energy should be renewable, here’s a way that congregations can at least save money. And if you or your pastor happens to care about the environment, that’s a bonus as well. Plus, there’s the bonus of being a witness and seeing if that beatitude holds up: blessed are the meek for they shall inherent the earth. . .
Your tax dollars help pay for the Environmental Protection Agency, and here’s a way for Adventist congregations to put our government to work. The ENERGY STAR Congregations program notes:

Most congregations can cut energy costs by up to 30% by investing
strategically in efficient equipment, facility upgrades and
maintenance. With free, unbiased information and technical support from
ENERGY STAR, your congregation can more easily improve stewardship of
your budget’s energy dollars, and of the earth by reducing energy waste
and energy costs, while protecting the environment.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR Congregations Network provides free information, technical support and public recognition for congregations that take significant action against energy waste. In 2005, with the help of ENERGY STAR, Americans saved enough energy to power 28 million homes and prevented global warming emissions equivalent to those of 23 million cars – while saving $12 billion on utility bills.
They offer awards to congregations based on their conservation efforts and energy savings. Your congregation can apply for one of these awards if you fulfill the following criteria: -Have a facility of 100,000 square feet or less.
-Practice exemplary energy efficiency that translates into real dollar savings.
-Occupy current facility/have been in location for at least 12 months. 
The deadline to apply is June 30, 2007.
For more information, call 1-888-STAR YES or check the Congregations website. (It takes about five minutes.) And it would a nice gift to the next generation of Adventists. . .

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