Solar Powered Church Unveiled by Mormons
One hundred and fifty-eight solar panels arranged on the roof of a new 20,000 square foot Latter Day Saints church will provide electricity for the building and congregation during the coming years. The structure is located in Farmington, Utah. In a test run over a six day period the panels generated 910 kilowatt hours of electricity. Only about 300 kwh are needed for a Sunday service. It has been estimated the panels should be able to generate enough electricity for the building to be self-sufficient. In its library an energy performance display shows power generated, power consumed, and cumulative savings, so all can learn about the benefits of solar technology.
Jared Doxey, the director of architecture, engineering and construction for the Church said, “Over the course of the year, we’re anticipating a net-zero electricity bill.” Some of the other environmentally friendly features of the structure include low-flush toilets, windows that partially filter sunlight to keep the building cool, and parking spots for fuel-efficient vehicles.
Such measures can reduce costs and protect the environment not only for the one building, but potentially for the 17,000 meetinghouses the Mormon Church owns. The Farmington facility is not the first Mormon meetinghouse to use solar power. One in Tahiti started using it 2007. The Mormon community has been employing conservation techniques for some time. One of their buildings in California is heated entirely by geothermal energy. Several other alternative energy meetinghouses are being built in the region.
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Image Credit: LDS.org