SAN FRANCISCO – Last night at Grace Episcopal Cathedral in San Francisco, three congregational members of California Interfaith Power & Light received “Energy Oscars” in three different categories for their outstanding leadership and exemplary efforts to address global warming and green their facilities.
150 people from several dozen houses of worship statewide attended the celebration, emceed by The Very Rev. Dr. Jane Shaw, Dean of Grace Episcopal Cathedral. Tom Steyer, noted investor, philanthropist, and environmental activist, gave opening remarks, along with The Rev. Canon Sally Bingham, founder of California Interfaith Power & Light. Winners walked a “green carpet” to receive their awards, and the evening featured entertainment from the acclaimed Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir.
The 2013 Energy Oscars winners are:
Green Building Oscar:
Congregation Sinai, San Jose
“Congregation Sinai is honored to be nominated for an Energy Oscar by California Interfaith Power and Light. Our Jewish tradition teaches us that we have to be responsible stewards of the earth. As a religious community, we hope to inspire ourselves and others to take concrete actions to both limit our energy consumption, and to acquire energy in a more sustainable way.” - Rabbi Josh Berkenwald, Congregation Sinai
Energy Efficiency Oscar:
Providence Baptist Church, San Francisco
“I am honored to receive this award, and am also inspired by the excellent work of the other finalists.” - Angelice Figueroa, Principal, Resurrection Catholic School, Boyle Heights
Education & Advocacy Oscar:
Resurrection Catholic Church and School, Los Angeles
“We owe a great deal to California Interfaith Power & Light. It was them who got us going in the direction of energy efficiency.” - G.L. Hodge, Church Administrator, Providence Baptist Church
A Green Clergy Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Rev. Albert G. Cohen, former director of the Southern California Ecumenical Council and lifetime environmental activist.
“All major faith traditions have the sacred principle of caring for all of Creation,” stated the Rev. Sally Bingham, Founder and President of California Interfaith Power & Light. “This includes protecting the planet and its eco-systems from carbon pollution. We are proud of all our congregations that are taking action to lower carbon emissions and fight climate change, and the Oscar winners were truly exemplary.”
More than 600 congregations throughout the state are members of California Interfaith Power and Light, which works with houses of worship on energy conservation, energy efficiency and sustainable energy measures. Nationally, the Interfaith Power & Light network is active in 40 states, working with a powerful force of over 15,000 congregations.