by Kevin Christopher Robles, America
In 2017, the Catholic Climate Covenant launched Catholic Energies, a program that helps Catholic organizations to become more environmentally friendly by providing them low-cost sources of alternative energy.
Recently, Catholic Energies partnered with IGS Solar and the Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington to build a large solar energy system in Washington, D.C. According to a press release, the new project “will host the 2-megawatt system comprising more than 5,000 panels” to give Catholic Charities “more than 2.7 million kilowatt-hours per year, nearly 100% of the current power requirements for CCADW’s real estate portfolio across the city.” Additionally, the project will “offset nearly 3,400 tons of CO2 emissions per year.”
“We went from a fairly small-scale roof-based system to a larger, ground-based system that provides a much bigger benefit to Catholic Charities,” said Dan Misleh, the executive director of the Catholic Climate Covenant. “It essentially takes away the cost of electricity for all Catholic Charities buildings. It lowers their rate to about two cents per kilowatt-hour, from about 11 cents per kilowatt-hour. Those savings then can go into the core mission of Catholic Charities: to shelter the homeless, to feed the hungry [and] to provide other services for the Archdiocese of Washington.”