Redeemer’s Church Council has been exploring the potential of installing a solar array over the last four months. At our Community Meeting held after worship on February 26th, we shared the following presentation as part of inviting the entire congregation to join us in prayer and discernment. We invite you to check out the presentation in full, but also to read through the following highlights.
We have included answers to questions that came up at the Community Meeting in these highlights:
- Installing Solar at Redeemer addresses our Focus Area of EarthCare.
- Installing Solar at Redeemer would help us to lock in our current electricity costs (around $1100 a month) and prevent larger increases in our electricity bills in the coming years.
- Installing Solar would mean that, after 10 yrs, Redeemer will pay little or much less each year for electricity. As electricity accounts for more than ½ of our current Building Use Costs (not including staff time), this means that after 10 years we would be removing over half of our Building Use Costs from our Spending Plan for the following 15- 20 yrs.
- Installing Solar potentially saves Redeemer $250,000 over 30 yrs.
- Power purchase agreements were explored, as well as leasing. In both cases there is vastly less savings, when such agreements are even available to commercial entities. For this reason, the Council recommends the plan for Solar purchase.
- Total Cost Breakdown are as follows:
- Total Cost: $194,950 (with tree trimming/removal)
- State incentive: $23,520
- Federal Incentive: $48,429
- Weber Legacy Gift (for down payment): $25,000
- Total Cost after installation is complete and loan re-amortized: $88,001
- The Council proposes that we take a loan through the ELCA Mission Investment Fund. The initial loan amount will be higher to cover all costs, but we pay interest only payments until the system is completely installed, then the loan is re-amortized.
- Warranties: 25 year limited power output warrant on panels, a 25 year warranty on inverters, and a 5 year warranty on labor.
- Next Steps Include: Everyone thinking/praying for a couple of weeks, followed by doing a straw poll at announcements to see if we’re ready to call a special congregational meeting.
- At a special congregational meeting we would receive a motion to take out the loan, use a down payment from the Weber Legacy Gift, and initiate installation of solar through Lighthouse Solar Company. After a Second there would be discussion and a vote.