Last spring, the Earth Ministry Committee team identified an opportunity for a church lighting efficiency project to reduce facility energy use and our carbon footprint, and save electrical costs. A team consisting of Rob Zimmerman, Jerry Kashmerick, Jim Maletta, Tom Kruse, Dennis Trinastic, Mark Steinberg, and Vicki Banville were involved in various project phases; scoping, energy and cost calculations, light bulb procurement, financing, installation and recycling of replaced lights.

In December 2022, volunteers replaced the older T8 fluorescent lights in the preschool classrooms and other adjacent spaces with LED bulbs, since those areas are the most used in our facility. A total of 84 four-foot fluorescent bulbs were replaced with four-foot LED bulbs.  An installation contractor was not needed since LED lights are now available that are direct replacements.

A local source with very low-priced, highly efficient LED bulbs was used (energy consumption of 15 watts per bulb versus 32 watts for replaced bulbs). The project’s initial cost was about $490. The calculated reduction in electricity consumption should result in annual savings of about $288 – $2881 over the expected 10-year life of the lights – based on the present cost of electricity.  In addition, each new LED bulb will last as long as at least five of the replaced bulbs, resulting in reduced waste from the disposal of old light bulbs and reduced maintenance work to keep the lights working. Another upgrade benefit is that all the renovated areas are much brighter with the new lights.

The replaced bulbs have been sent to a New Berlin recycling facility, further reducing the environmental impact of this improvement.

For more information about this project or to learn more about the Earth Ministry Committee, contact Mark Steinberg.