Houses of Worship
Stewardship is an essential element in most religious traditions. An increasing number of religious denominations and individual congregations are embarking on sustainability initiatives. These may include improving the sustainability of their facilities as well as mission-based programs.
Green Needham has an Outreach program working with Needham's houses of worship. A number of Needham's faith-based communities have active sustainability/stewardship programs and more groups are being formed. We are seeking information about sustainability initiatives in Needham's Houses of Worship and would like to facilitate sharing of experiences and information.
Groups are welcome and encouraged to share information on these pages. Below is a table listing some of the Needham Houses of Worship which have active sustainability groups. (A list of all the Houses of Worship is here.) If you are affiliated with any of our houses of worship and have information to share or would like help looking at sustainability, please e-mail Eleanor Rosellini or call (781 453-9526 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting 781 453-9526 end_of_the_skype_highlighting).
- Interfaith Environmental Network - Information from February 24, 2010 meeting
|Religious Organization||Clergy||Sustainability Contact||Active Group|
|Christ Episcopal Church||Skip Windsor||Kevin Ruddy||Yes|
|Congregational Church||Susan Cartmell, Heike Werder||Deb Baldwinemail@example.com||Yes|
|First Parish UU||John Buehrens||Eleanor Rosellinifirstname.lastname@example.org||Yes|
|Temple Aliyah||Carl Perkins||Vicki Krupp|
|Temple Beth Shalom||Jay Perlman||Beth Shulman, Nancy Berger||Shomrei Adonai|
Houses of Worship Information
Detailed information for sustainability efforts of the houses of worship below is available by clicking on their highlighted name.
- First Parish in Needham - has made sustainability a centerpiece of the renovation and expansion of their facilities. The carbon footprint of their expanded facilities has decreased by approximately 36%, and continued improvement is anticipated as more energy-saving measures are taken.
- Temple Beth Shalom's active social action group, Shomrei Adamah is conducting a congregation-wide carbon reduction campaign.
Temple Aliyah - Vicki Levy Krupp
Temple Aliyah's Green Committee started meeting this past fall. We're investigating soy-based and corn-based utensils to replace plastic utensils, and plates made from sugar cane by-products. We are working on signage to remind people about powering down equipment and turning off lights. We have had several audits through NSTAR, including a multi-family audit that likely will result in lightbulbs and possibly a discount on insulation. (We have a residential account through NSTAR, so we're not eligible for a commencial audit.)
Faith-based Sustainability Organizations
- "a non-profit initiative offering Massachusetts congregations of every religious tradition a comprehensive means of reducing energy consumption, lowering operating costs, and promoting clean, renewable energy in houses of worship and related buildings"
- Interfaith Power and Light, which now has organizations in 28 states, has its roots in Episcopal Power, a 1990's response to Global Warming that had early success buying renewable power for a group of California Episcopal Dioceses.