Innogen offers church plan
IN LIGHT OF soaring electricity bills, one alternative energy company has decided to offer “significant concessions” to the island’s churches.
“Our plan is to meet with the pastoral bodies so we can make presentations about what we want to do. We have designed ways to show them how to save money, whether for missions or evangelical outreaches,” Innogen sales manager Ricky Singh told the SUNDAY SUN on Tuesday.
“I have seen the electricity bills of quite a few churches, and they were in excess of $2 000 per month. We can eliminate them or bring it down considerably.”
Innogen’s offering to the church started last year, after focusing mainly on households. The James Street Methodist manse in Highgate Garden, the Holy Trinity Anglican Church in Sanford, St Philip with LED lighting and Sharon Evangelical Church, Bush Hall have been outfitted so far, while other churches have shown interest. Replacement of conventional lighting and the installation of photovoltaic panels were two of the main sought- after services.
And even though the church is yet to see its first electricity bill since the installation, Pastor Carl Barker of Sharon Evangelical Church said significant changes had already been noticed.
“ . . . By doing my own check, I have realised that in a month we are making . . . 200 kilowatts more than we are taking from them . . . and we are expecting we will be having a zero bill.”
He added that the church’s light bill was around $15 000 to $17 000 per month, due to the three weekly church services and other activities, combined with the daycare facility operated on the premises.
“We did what we could to cut the costs down. When we first got here [at our present location] it was in the region of $5 000 to $7 000 and over the years the fuel surcharge and VAT escalated it,” Barker explained.
“. . . We did away with some lights . . . and tried to save as much as we could, but then you reach a point where you still had to function, and we can’t take a decision to cut down the services to save. . .”
The church installed a 15 kilowatt system [and] changed the conventional lighting to LED lights.
“We reasoned that if we get a solar system, we know what we would be paying until the system was paid off, and after that you don’t have to pay [Innogen] or have a light bill, and we thought that was the right way to go.” (LW)