CU aids church’s energy efficiency

BOULDER – A local church plans to install solar panels and use wind power in the future, thanks to students from the University of Colorado-Boulder’s sustainable-practices program.

Students involved in the program prepared a sustainability report for Saints Peter & Paul Greek Orthodox Church in Gunbarrel. The class recommends environmental and energy-saving initiatives to both public-sector groups and businesses. In addition to the solar panels and wind power, the church is expected to incorporate sustainability practices into its planned new community center, and to teach children in its congregation about environmental practices, among other things, according to a press statement.

“We try to figure out how to weave sustainability in the fabric of an organization,” Kai Abelkis, class professor, said in the press statement. “We take that knowledge and apply it to a real-life setting and a real-life client.”

Abelkis is a professional sustainability coordinator at Boulder Community Hospital who has been recognized nationally for his work. The class is part of CU’s Sustainable Practices Program, which includes courses and a professional certificate for students who complete the training.

The program offers skills-based training for students interested in consulting and sustainability positions in both the public and the private sector. More information is online at

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