New Solar Panels Emphasize Our Commitment to the Environment
ABOUT THE PROJECT
The synagogue’s new solar energy system came to fruition through a unique public-private partnership. Temple Aliyah is a member of PowerOptions, a nonprofit energy purchasing consortium that also has a solar program, offered by Solect, for small commercial customers. Solect owns the synagogue’s system, covering the costs of procuring, installing, operating, and maintaining it. Solect, a for-profit enterprise, is able to take advantage of federal solar tax credits, and in turn can sell the synagogue’s electricity at a reduced fixed rate—saving thousands of dollars each year.
“Temple Aliyah is always looking for opportunities to reduce the synagogue’s carbon footprint and to reduce operational costs,” said Fred Borgenicht, Temple Aliyah’s vice president of operations. “Installing solar panels through this public-private partnership was a no-brainer.”
“At Temple Aliyah, we are focused on making a better future for our community, both large and small,” said David Farbman, Temple Aliyah president. “We believe that by significantly reducing our carbon footprint by hosting one of the largest solar arrays of any house of worship in the state, we are helping both our synagogue and our wider world at the same time.”
Said Rabbi Carl Perkins, “Our tradition teaches us that we have a duty ‘to till and to tend’ the precious world which is our collective home. That implies that we must seek to conserve natural resources, including energy. By capturing some of the energy contained in the sunlight falling on our property, we are making progress in our quest to be faithful stewards of this precious collective home which has been entrusted to us.”
To see information information about our Ribbon Cutting Ceremony on November 5, 2017, including a video of a presentation at that ceremony, please click here.
HOW ARE WE DOING?
To see a dynamic chart showing our ongoing solar energy production and our savings, as well as photos of our panels, in the frame below (if it doesn't show up, click here). You can click on the buttons and tabs for different views.
OTHER GREEN INITIATIVES AT TEMPLE ALIYAH
Throughout our history, the Jewish people has been mindful of our responsibility to be stewards of creation and to care for our precious environment. The Temple Aliyah Green Committee focuses on improving and enhancing the Temple community’s relationship to nature.
Our goals include educating the community about the Jewish basis of environmental stewardship, reducing waste at the Temple, and encouraging members to include conservation in other areas of their lives.
Look for signs that our temple has been “going green:" paperless bulletins, compact fluorescent bulbs, soy-based utensils, motion sensor lighting, digital thermostats, and many more.
Check out the Green Committee's Tips for keeping things Green!
If you would like to learn more about our solar project, or others like it, please get in touch with Fred Borgenicht. To learn more about Tikkun Olam at Temple Aliyah, please contact our Social Action committee chairs: Janet Besser and Rachel Weinstock.