Matawan First Presbyterian Church Goes Solar
First Presbyterian goes green in time for Christmas
In an effort to save money and be environmentally friendly, First Presbyterian Church in Matawan is becoming one of the few churches in New Jersey to upgrade to solar power.
Under the guidance of contractor George Dzurina and Interim Reverend Dr. N. Scott Cupp the planning of the installation began six months ago and the construction started Nov. 14.
Dzurina, who is an ordained elder and has been a member of the church for the past four years, is an electrical engineer who started his own contracting company G-Crew four years ago. Dzurina said solar panels have been discussed at the church for a long time; it was just a matter of finding the people to do the work.
“This really is a long term investment,” Cupp said. “I want this to help keep the building open.”
After broaching the topic of solar panels with the congregants and elders, Dzurina said everyone was excited about the opportunity. So, his company negotiated a deal with the church to install the panels at a 35% discounted price for the next 15 years. Because it is not the simplest job, Dzurina reached out to Triple G Energy, who own the solar panels that the church will be using.
“I think people are excited about it,” he said. “This type of project is really a winner for everyone.”
Solar power will allow the church to produce more power than it consumes, according to Dzurina. In addition to providing a boost for the church, it will also give electricity to the surrounding area.
Although there was no resistance from members to go solar, it was not the easiest process, Dzurina said. They needed to get the approval of the power company, find an energy company, obtain permits and not to mention the solar panels alone cost at least $100,000. Federal grants and loans were able to assist the church in purchasing the solar panels, he said.
Prior to construction, Dzurina had a graphic design artist create rough outlines of what the church will look like upon completion and put them on the church’s website.
“People are always concerned about what it will look like,” he said.
Dzurina said the goal is to have everything completed by Dec. 5. Both Cupp and Dzurina said they are eager to see the finished product and feel that after a few months people will hardly notice a difference.