Places Of Worship


“The very existence of life – life that religious people are called to protect – is jeopardized by our continued dependence on fossil fuels for energy. Every major religion has a mandate to care for Creation." —Interfaith Power & Light

Churches, temples, and mosques are responding and adapting. Interfaith Power & Light, a national coalition that fuses faith with environmental advocacy, has assisted over 770 houses of worship nationwide to reduce their carbon footprint by installing solar panels on their buildings. The Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation was the first house of worship in the world to become LEED certified. A Minneapolis mosque, Masjid An-Nur, had been plagued with flooding and is being transformed into an “eco-mosque” with stormwater improvements. Masjid An-Nur is also working together with Shiloh Temple on a massive community solar garden project. Shiloh Temple has installed solar on their rooftop, enabling them to provide clean energy in a low-income community of color, create green jobs for local residents, and make sure that low-income families have access to community solar.  

See some inspiring green houses of worship around the world here.  

Just Solar: The Shiloh Story


A huge city polluter? Buildings. Here’s a surprising fix.

By Brad Plumer 03/10/23
On cold mornings in New York City, boilers in the basements of thousands of buildings kick on, burning natural gas or oil to provide heat for the people upstairs. Carbon dioxide from these boilers wafts…
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In Massachusetts, more houses of worship are turning to solar power

By Sarah Shemkus 08/03/20
The state trailed only California in the number of houses of worship with solar installations in operation last year.
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St. Charles Methodist Church Gets a Brand New Green Roof

By Aramis Velazquez 02/06/20
Green Roof Blocks manufactures roof garden modules and paks providing simple solutions for green roof systems. The Green Paks green roof system brings simplicity to green building for less money than other gardenscapes products. Each…
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Powered By Faith, Religious Groups Emerge As A Conduit For A Just Solar Boom

By Avery Ellfeldt 12/15/19
Minnesota winters are long, brutal and gray. Minneapolis resident Keith Dent has endured 38 of them. But over the last several years, he's experienced what he calls a "reintroduction to the sun."
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Solar Light of the World: Evangelicals Launch Global Clean Energy Campaign

By Griffin Paul Jackson 12/11/19
The initiative aims to convert 1 in 5 WEA churches and institutions to renewable power by 2025.
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How green theology is energizing the black community to fight the climate crisis

By Nicollette Higgs 11/22/19
Black churches across the country are embracing sustainability through Green The Church, an initiative that empowers congregations to use sustainable food and energy practices to fight the climate crisis and strengthen their communities.
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Skyscraper-like church fits into awkward city plot

By Adam Williams 11/11/19
Visitors to the Wesleyan House Methodist International Church will now be able to get closer to the heavens – literally – thanks to an unusual house of worship by Rocco Design Architects. Referred to as…
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How a ‘green’ church in Toronto teaches theology through design

By Dean Dettloff 08/23/19
“You’re just catching the tail end of the light show,” said the architect Roberto Chiotti a little after 1 p.m., showing off the sanctuary of St. Gabriel’s Passionist Parish in Toronto, the church he designed…
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Architect unveils striking proposal for ‘green’ Notre Dame

By Emily Dixon 05/10/19
he rebuilt Notre Dame could feature a futuristic glass design, solar power, and an urban farm that supports vulnerable and homeless Parisians, if one architecture firm's vision is realized.
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Three Boston Congregations Team Up for Community Solar Project

By Rev. Mariama White-Hammond 05/09/17
Reverend Mariama White-Hammond, a Class of 2009 Barr Fellow, shares three lessons and a new video documenting a novel collaboration of three churches committed to action on climate change and equity.
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Green the Church: On a Mission of Faith for Sustainability

By Betsy Lopez-Wagner 06/29/16
The Green the Church movement is teaming up with spiritual leaders to engage churches and other houses of worship in the climate fight.
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Churches and Synagogues Worship Green Building

By Andrea Donsky 05/08/09
Homes and offices are going green across the country, and an entire city is even being rebuilt green. But there's a new space embracing the eco-revolution. It seems churches, synagogues and other houses of worship…
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Greening Your Church: 9 Stewardship Strategies that Won’t Break the Budget

9 budget friendly strategies to green your church.

Green Congregation Guides

Many guides to greening congregations have been developed by a diversity of religious traditions and denominations. Many of these programs are applicable to any congregation.

Green Your Synagogue: Making Your Shul a Green Holy Place

One of Judaism’s most important concepts is that of kedusha — holiness. Kedusha is inherent in God, but also can be created by people in their actions.

Greening Synagogues: Lessons from the Jewish Greening Fellowship

In 2008 UJA-Federation of New York leaders began to consider how to respond to growing concerns about climate change. They also explored emerging perspectives about how environmental, social, and political aspects of sustainability will impact…

High Holidays: Greening Your Synagogue

Implement methods to improve the sustainability of all activity related to the grounds and buildings of synagogues.

Greening Your Church: Getting Started & Doing the Basics

The "getting started" stages of greening your church provide a wonderful opportunity to make a qualitative shift in your church life. You can go from not doing anything, to doing something! You can move toward…

How green is your church? Suggested actions

Here is a list of actions that may help to encourage your church community to become more engaged with environmental issues, including climate change.

The Sustainable Church: A New Way to Look at the Place of Worship

For centuries, the notions of sacred and development were closely related in European culture, both in the eld of architecture, and, more broadly, in the arts. Sustainability, in this respect, mostly appeared in non-architectural terms.

The first steps toward a sustainable building

If you are starting from scratch and want to improve the sustainability of your church building, then follow these simple steps!


Ask the Green Architect: Green Church Construction; IAQ RFP; Designing a Green Dorm Eric Corey Freed

By Eric Corey Freed   11/15/05  
Green architect Eric Corey Freed answers your questions on sustainable building performance, materials, and design.
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