Menno Haven Goes Solar!
Menno Haven is at the forefront of innovation! Our team and residents are leading the way for green initiatives in our community.
In 2020, our resident-driven Green Team envisioned bringing solar energy to Menno Haven with a goal of reducing our community’s carbon footprint. The newly completed Life Center now hosts a 54kW solar array to help power the building. This array will produce about 60,000 kilo Watt-hours a year, saving Menno Haven over $3,000 a year in electrical costs. In addition, Menno Haven will receive about $1,000 a year in Solar Renewable Energy Credits. Solar power is a 100% clean, renewable energy source. It dramatically reduces reliance on oil, coal, and natural gas for electricity production. These fossil fuels produce harmful emissions that affect the quality of air, soil, and water and are responsible for global warming. Solar energy at the Life Center will result in an estimated yearly reduction of 47 tons of CO2 emissions. John Luetzelschwab, Menno Haven resident and co-founder of the Green Team says, “We feel that this is just a first step.”
He adds, “Paradise Energy Solutions, the company that installed the system, normally has a ribbon cutting ceremony when the system starts operating. However, because of the restriction due to the pandemic, that ceremony has been postponed until the Coronavirus abates so we can gather together again. A monitor is being installed in the Life Center that has a live-time display of the electricity production, so residents will be able to see how much energy the solar system is providing.”
Within a year, over $131,000 was raised from residents and Board Members in a Solar Campaign by the Menno Haven Development Team. Chuck Nelson, Chief Development Officer says, “The response to our Solar Campaign was overwhelming, and we are truly grateful for those who support our Mission to be an innovative organization!”
Menno Haven’s Green Team in cooperation with the Board’s Sub-committee on Sustainability, will be focusing on ways to reduce Menno Haven’s environmental footprint, including more solar energy. The Green Team was formed to increase recycling and to investigate ways to save energy, resources, and money. Toward this goal they sponsor such activities as recycling all batteries and CFL bulbs, and, in cooperation with the Chambersburg Police Department, collect unused medications for proper disposal. As a result of these kinds of activities, Menno Haven was certified as a Green Non-Profit in 2012, and was awarded the Chambersburg Chamber of Commerce Sustainability Award in 2016.
As a community, Menno Haven continues to be an innovative organization that looks for ways to be more environmentally conscious.
For more information on Menno Haven call 717.262.2373 or visit www.mennohaven.org