October is National Energy Awareness Month and the NC Council of Churches wants to empower congregations to do all they can to reduce their carbon footprint and move to clean energy. Through our NC Interfaith Power & Light program, we offer a free energy savings analysis for NC congregational facilities, plus many other resources through our emPOWERed campaign.
Below are excerpts from a blog by David Melone of national Interfaith Power & Light about the first nationwide Energy Efficiency Day. We hope that you take some time this month to reflect on why, when, and where you can possibly save energy as a way to practice care of creation.
We join with thousands of other organizations and individuals across the country to celebrate the significant achievements of energy efficiency measures, and to spread awareness of the steps we can all take to reduce our demand for fossil fuels.
Energy-saving programs, policies, and technologies have been one of the greatest contributors to environmental progress over the past thirty years, preventing over 2 billion tons of CO2 emissions from entering the atmosphere. It’s a simple principle—finding new and inventive ways to use less energy is the quickest and most affordable way to live out our faith-based calling to combat climate change.
Energy efficiency measures are unique in that they often benefit us directly by saving money, and they provide us an avenue for environmental action with a relatively low barrier to entry. Actions as simple as checking the seals on the windows in your home or place of worship can significantly reduce the monetary and environmental costs of heating and cooling—in fact, it is estimated that the average home has enough air leaks to be equivalent to leaving a window wide open 24 hours a day. Updating lighting is another simple and cost-effective step. LED bulbs use 75% less electricity and last 25 times longer than incandescent ones, more than recouping their higher upfront cost.
Increased efficiency has prevented the opening of 313 new power plants in the United States since 1990, saving 790 billion dollars and countless metric tons of pollution from entering our atmosphere. Such progress is a sign of hope when we often find ourselves asking if we can actually make a difference. Through leading by example, and educating others on how to demand less of the earth, we can make great progress towards better caring for Creation and mitigating the negative effects of climate change.
A faithful response to global warming requires that we live into the values of simplicity and sustainable stewardship, and energy efficiency provides an attainable way to do this. We hope that today you will take some time to consider your place in the environment and the world, look at how you might use less energy, and meditate on how your resources and time could go toward ensuring that the benefits of energy efficiency can be shared by all of us.
Read the full blog here.