Holy Wisdom Monastery’s new solar panels to boost solar energy production to 40-50%

Mike Sweitzer-BeckmanCare for the Earth, LEED Certified Building Leave a Comment

We wanted to provide this update to all Sunday Assembly members, Oblate community members, and donors to the LEED-certified platinum building
campaign at Holy Wisdom Monastery.

You may notice work being done on the roofs of the monastery and retreat and guest house at Holy Wisdom Monastery. Several new photovoltaic solar panels are being installed that will increase the solar energy production for the LEED-certified platinum monastery building from about 10% to an estimated 40-50%.

The sisters had an opportunity recently to work with a private investor group who will purchase the new photovoltaic panels and receive the tax incentives. The only new cost to the sisters will be covered by a grant from Focus on Energy for about $40,000. After a 15 year period, the sisters will have an opportunity to purchase the photovoltaic panels at a depreciated price. In the interim, energy usage payments will be made to the investors, which will cost about the same as what the sisters are paying now to provide energy in the building.

Solar panel email photo 2
“In keeping with our care for the earth values, this opportunity helps us get closer to our ultimate goal of having a 100% energy efficient, self-sustaining building,” said Mary David Walgenbach, OSB, prioress of Benedictine Women of Madison at Holy Wisdom Monastery. “Our Benedictine values call us to do what we can to conserve precious natural resources on this earth.”

Following the Benedictine value of simplicity, the panels on the monastery building will be hard to spot from the ground level. Several new ones will be installed on the slanted roof of the monastery near the existing photovoltaic panels. However, the majority of the new panels will be installed in a way where they won’t be visible from the street level. The panels being added to the retreat and guest house will be more visible to all who come to the building.

Learn more about the LEED-certified platinum monastery on our June 7, 2014 building tour or contact Ann Moyer at amoyer@benedictinewomen.org or 608-836-1631, x197. For tour details visit: benedictinewomen.org/environment/green-building/building-tours

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *