As you may recall, last November, we had a new boiler installed as the first of our Capital Campaign building projects. It was a high efficiency, Energy Star boiler and we received a rebate from PGW for its installation. A less efficient boiler would have been less expensive, but Old First was considering the long term expenses of running a boiler and energy conservation as well. At our Annual Meeting in January, we approved an Energy Resolution, part of which states:
- BE IT RESOLVED, that Old First Reformed UCC is committed to incorporating energy conservation into the operation and maintenance of the church buildings;
- BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that Old First Reformed UCC will promote and encourage energy conservation and awareness, the importance of reducing our dependence on non-renewable resources such as fossil fuels by taking steps to reduce our carbon foot print in the Old First Reformed UCC community and beyond;
This commitment to incorporating energy conservation is fueling our decisions regarding not only the boiler, but the temperature of the thermostat, the replacement of lights in our Sanctuary Building, and the installation of insulation.
Already, we have realized considerable savings from the new, high-efficiency boiler. In the first 5 months of use, the boiler used only 2251 cubic feet of gas, compared to 5367 cubic feet of gas in the same months, November through March of 2014-2015. We used less than half as much gas. Although this past winter was milder than the previous winter, it is still a remarkable conservation effort. And we spent $3,714 less on gas this winter than last, only $2,661 as opposed to $6,375 the previous winter.
If we continue to realize similar savings in the future, the boiler will have paid for itself in less than 10 years, not including the rebate of $4,200 we received from PGW for installing a high-efficiency boiler. Incorporating energy conservation in the operation and maintenance of our church buildings not only make sense for the environment, but saves dollars and cents for our congregation.