News

  • [ September 16, 2013 ]
  • IIPL: “Faith in a Changing Climate” Brings Energy and Faith Together

Keynote speaker, Mark A. Torgerson, speaks to a packed lodge at Jester Park in Granger, Iowa. Attendees joined from all around the state, looking to learn more about faith's role in climate change and what they could do to help; Photo by Liz Zabel / Iowa Energy Center

On Thursday, August 29, 2013, people of faith from all around Iowa gathered at Jester Park Lodge in Granger, Iowa for the “Faith in a Changing Climate” conference. The event included presentations from various speakers, including Mark A. Torgerson, author and professor of theology, worship, and architecture; David Hade, president and co-owner of Iowa Home Crafters in Ames, Iowa; and Kimberly Dickey, an archaeologist currently researching energy and water security for the Iowa Army National Guard.

Dr. Mark A. Torgerson delivers his keynote address on the role of faith in climate change. Dr. Torgerson included information from various religions to show the "harmony between all parts of creation" and advised all attendees to reach across religious lines to join together and protect and share the earth with all human and non-human entities. Photo by Liz Zabel / Iowa Energy Center

The nearly 6-hour-long event featured presentations covered a variety of topics. Mr. Torgerson talked extensively about the role of faith in combatting climate change. He reminded attendees to become better neighbors and share the worth of creation with others by taking care of the earth. Mrs. Dickey explained the benefits of going solar and showed how attendees could get started on a solar project for their home. Mr. Hade spoke on the importance of home energy efficiency assessments and advised attendees to take advantage of local assessment opportunities.

Not far from the lodge's entrance, attendees could watch a solar-powered popcorn machine pop popcorn from purely renewable energy generated on-site. Taste-testers raved about the popcorn and were delighted to test the power of the sun in such a delicious way; Photo by Liz Zabel / Iowa Energy Center

Included in the event was a break for lunch, where attendees could eat the provided lunch as well as explore the bookstore and exhibits featured along the walls of the lodge. Many were attracted to the solar-powered popcorn popper outside, which allowed for solar contractors to explain how solar panels work while attendees munched on the buttery treat made possible simply by plugging the popping machine directly into the solar panel.

Iowa Interfaith Power and Light Board President, Dr. Jim Martin-Schramm, makes closing remarks after the event. Martin-Schramm joked about the irony of the stuffed Elk above the heads of presenters while speaking about climate change and environmental consciousness; Photo by Liz Zabel / Iowa Energy Center

This event received funding through the Iowa Energy Center’s (IEC’s) Conference and Events grant program. Learn more about the Energy Center’s grants and funding program here.

For more information about Iowa Interfaith Power and Light and upcoming events similar to this one, visit their website here. 

Related: Faith in a Changing Climate Conference, Iowa Energy Center

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