Why should I sign Michigan IPL’s Covenant?
Whether you’ve been a member in the past or you’re totally new, signing the Covenant lets us know that you’re committed to the important work we’re doing together– from bringing energy efficiency to congregations to advocating for the systemic change we need to prevent catastrophic climate disruption. By getting involved in our work, you help build the interfaith movement to protect Creation at a time of great urgency.
What difference does it make?
Though it may not feel like much, affirming your membership connects you with thousands of Michiganders and tens of thousands of others affiliated with 39 other state IPLs. Our collective and coordinated actions– from advocacy campaigns to Earth Day activities– DO make an impact.
Your participation is also symbolic. Congregations who publicly celebrate the actions they’ve taken to become better stewards of Creation, or who speak about the importance of Earth care as a part of their faith identities, show their communities what they stand for. And by sharing your stories with us, you help inspire and equip other congregations to bring their energy to this cause.
I need to bring the Covenant to my congregation’s governing body before signing. How can I get a copy to print or email?
What happened to the membership fee?
While we hope that you or your congregation will choose to support our work financially, we do not wish for our relationships with supporters to be or feel transactional in nature. By asking supporters to sign a Covenant instead, we hope to build a relationship with you that grows from our shared values.
What about the membership benefits?
The benefits that existed previously, such as the discounts on energy efficiency products and services, remain intact and can be accessed at our Member Center.
We also hope that you will find value in the intangible benefits you receive through your membership. Joining Michigan IPL means adding your voice to the interfaith movement to protect the health of our communities and our Earth. It means helping reverse the damage that’s been done to our climate, before it’s too late.
Can my congregation get a free energy audit?
Michigan IPL does not provide energy audits. Instead, we contract with utilities to provide houses of worship with free energy analyses and upgrades in certain geographic areas (designated by the utility). These programs vary from year to year. Check out our Energy Efficiency page for details on what we’re currently doing.
Currently, utilities are required by law to provide some free efficiency products and services to their customers– both Residential and Commercial. We suggest going to your utility’s website and checking out what is currently on offer. If you decide to pay for a full audit, either for your home or your house of worship, remember that you are eligible for 10% off, as detailed on our Member Discounts page.
How can we get a grant to do energy upgrades to our building or put on solar panels?
We are not aware of general grants that fund such projects. However, your denomination may have funds available for hardship situations or special projects.
If you are interested in learning more about solar, check out our Go Solar! initiative, which offers lease-to-own financing for solar PV systems. You can also read about congregations who have successfully raised money and installed solar panels on our Success Stories page: Plymouth United Church of Christ in Grand Rapids and First Presbyterian Church of Saline.
Can I talk with someone from another congregation that’s installed solar panels?
Absolutely. Email Leah at firstname.lastname@example.org, and she can make the introduction.
Where do you get your funding?
As a 501(c)(3) non-profit, our funding varies from year to year. In 2016, our funding comes primarily from contracts with utilities and grants from private foundations. We also rely on contributions from corporations and members like you!
What if I don’t believe in climate change?
Climate change notwithstanding, Michigan Interfaith Power & Light’s mission is to inspire and equip people of faith to exercise stewardship of and love for all Creation. We believe we all have a moral responsibility to conserve our precious natural resources by adopting sustainable practices. So saving energy is not only the right thing to do, it’s also a good way to save money on utility bills.
Most denominations have official statements about Earth care. If you haven’t already, you might be interested in learning about your denomination’s official position on these issues. We have aggregated a few Faith Statements on the Environment here.
Where can I get Michigan IPL swag?
We know you are clamoring for this, and we are working on it 😉 Stay tuned!