Praying for sun
A church in Poland has applied the dictum “The Lord helps those who help themselves” to saving on energy costs. The priest of the local parish was tired of paying hefty electricity bills so he raised his eyes to the rooftops and beheld an opportunity.
Polish project developer, RenSan Energy, installed a 37 kW Canadian Solar PV system on the roof of the catholic church in Skoczow-Pogorze in Upper Silesia - in less than three weeks. And as if that wasn’t miraculous enough it was also the first PV installation in the country.
“High expectations were linked to the construction project due to its uniqueness. That is why we selected the polycrystalline CS6P-P modules of Canadian Solar. Their high quality and outstanding performance, as well as their proven reliability made them the obvious choice,” said Piotr Zajac, project lead at RenSan Energy. “And we were not disappointed,” he added. “The PV system has performed really well and has more than fulfilled the expectations of the church.”
Solar generated energy now fuels all electric heating in the building, as well as lighting for the presbytery and adjoining buildings, which include several chapels, conference rooms, 30 guest rooms and the canteen kitchen. And the parish also benefits from remuneration for the surplus kilowatt-hours it feeds into the national grid. “We are naturally particularly delighted with the positive feedback from the congregation and other priests in the region, as well as the bishop and local public servants,” said Zajac. Besides making financial sense over the long term, there is also a poetic element fitting the church with solar energy.
“After all, it says in the book of Genesis that ‘God made the two great lights—the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night’ and what could be more fitting than using the Lord’s handiwork to power the church,” Zajac commented.
“The emerging Polish solar market has great potential, not least because the government has underlined its support for the expansion of renewable technologies to diversify the energy mix through the introduction of a feed in-tariff,” said Dr. Shawn Qu, Chairman and CEO of Canadian Solar. “We are convinced of the possibilities for solar energy in Poland and the corresponding advantages for the population,” he concluded.