Needham houses of worship unite in environmental stewardship

View original: Wicked Local

Standing in a shadowy basement room at Christ Episcopal Church, next to the motor and pump that power the church organ, Michael Beagan held his finger up to a small digital screen.

"On a nice sunny day this would be eight or nine thousand," he said. "You can see it’s 664."

Beagan, the church facilities manager, or sexton, was referring to the kilowatts of electricity being produced by the building’s 7-month-old solar array.

It was raining that day, but on average, the solar panels meet 85 percent of the church’s energy needs. Although this saves them around $1,500 annually, Beagan said economics did not drive the decision.

"The motive to install the solar was to set an example and be good citizens and be good stewards of the environment," he said.

Christ Church is one of at least six houses of worship that make up the Needham Interfaith Environmental Network. Members of the Network meet regularly to plan programs and share strategies for reducing the carbon footprint of their respective houses of worship. 

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