Cool Congregations

Cool Congregations Certificate Program

CC 2Interfaith Power & Light (IPL) and its 40 state affiliates, encourage congregations of all faiths save energy, go green, and respond to climate change. IPL is excited about its national recognition program and its first 20 Certified Cool Congregations. These exemplary houses of worship have proven that they are reaching significant carbon pollution reductions in response to global warming that often surpass the U.S. goal of 17% outlined by President Obama in his Climate Action Plan.

Driven by a common mandate to be good stewards of Creation, the first 20 Certified Cool Congregations are averaging 42% greenhouse gas reductions, showing that where there’s a will, there’s a way. Their stories are both practical and hopeful. IPL president, the Rev. Canon Sally G. Bingham, says, “These congregations are leading the way. They are putting their faith into action and bringing moral responsibility to the forefront of the movement to protect the climate.”

The Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR estimates that if all of America’s congregations cut energy use just 20% it would save nearly $630 million per year, and prevent more than 2.6 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions – the equivalent of eliminating emissions from 480,000 cars from the road.


Join the movement, put New Mexico Faith Communities on the map and have your good work recognized with beautiful plaques as you make progress.  A wonderful way to continually educate and inspire faith communities and care for creation by putting faith into action. 

IPL Logo 03.24.2016Let New Mexico Interfaith Power and Light help you get started:
 *We can explain the program and assist you in making a plan for energy efficiency or to pursue solar panel installation. *NMIPL has no interest revolving loan fund for up to $10,000 that can help jump start your efforts and work with your House of Worship to plan paying back the loan.

 *Consider taking the Paris Pledge moving beyond the UN Paris Climate Agreement of December 2015.  Faith communities are taking a prophetic witness and pledging to reduce carbon emissions by 50% by 2030 and to net zero by 2050.  Will you take the pledge?

 *When you have made your improvements apply to win prizes through the Annual Cool Congregation Awards from the national IPL and let NMIPL know about your good work so that you might be honored as one of our annual SEED Awardees.

 New Mexico Interfaith Power and Light

PO Box 27162

Albuquerque, New Mexico  87125****505-266-6966


Solar Financing for Congregations with CollectiveSun


America’s faith communities lead the way on slashing climate pollution

Cool Congregations Challenge winners announced today
April 21, 2015 – In celebration of Earth Day, Interfaith Power & Light (IPL) has announced its annual Cool Congregations Challenge winners — exemplary faith communities modeling climate solutions and Earth stewardship in dozens of inspiring projects across the nation. The winning faith communities represent many different religious backgrounds, but all share a common mission — to respond to the threat of climate change by taking concrete actions with tangible carbon reductions. The Rev. Canon Sally Bingham, founder and president of Interfaith Power & Light, says, “It’s very inspiring to see so many congregations stepping up in response to climate change, especially this year as global leaders prepare to meet in Paris to discuss the reduction of global carbon pollution and the climate crisis. IPL’s Cool Congregations are leaders. They’re not waiting until 2030 or 2050 to make a difference — they’re showing us that cutting emissions by 50% or more is not only possible now, but many have even gone carbon neutral.” On average, winners and runners-up saved $8,000/year on their energy bill, and prevented 
58-metric tons of CO2 from entering the atmosphere (per congregation). All first place Cool Congregations Challenge winners will receive a $1,000 cash prize.
Challenge winners, runners-up, and honorable mentions have been awarded in five categories that include: Energy Saver, Renewable Role Model, Sacred Grounds Steward, Community Inspiration, and Cool Planner. Final entries were received in January and judged by a panel of experts from Interfaith Power & Light, EPA’s Energy Star, the U.S. Green Building Council, and Nature’s Friends Institute. Judges favored projects with well-defined and measurable objectives for climate benefit; creativity and resourcefulness in executing the project; congregant and/or community engagement; and inspirational stories. A sampling of winning and runner-up entries include: the largest community-supported solar system in West Virginia; the nation’s largest solar-powered straw bale eco and solar education center for kids and professionals in Arkansas; a re-created native habitat that replaces turf, reduces CO2 and prevents runoff in Indiana; a Compassion Education Center in Kentucky to model care for the Earth and future generations, and; energy saving volunteers in North Carolina working at the nexus of climate and poverty. Please see the attached rundown of winners, along with links to entry details and photos.
Media Contact: Andrée Duggan, IPL: (860) 395-7283,