Aug. 21, 2013
Implement methods to improve the sustainability of all activity related to the grounds and buildings of synagogues.
Greening Your Synagogues
1. Learn about ways to improve the sustainability of all activity related to the grounds and buildings of synagogues
2. Set up a committee at your synagogue for implementing these changes
3. Implement changes in synagogue policy and execution of all operations related to maintaining the grounds of a synagogue
Overview: Protecting the environment and doing practices that are sustainable are not just good policy measures, but are also commanded of us by our Jewish textual tradition. The Torah teaches us that we are partners with God in creating and sustaining our world, so it is our duty and moral obligation to engage in sustainable business and personal practices. The long-term project provides ideas for congregations to implement sustainable practices in running the grounds of their synagogues to encourage and live out our ideals.
Implementation: Most of the land that synagogues and other Jewish communities hold in trust, besides a few dense urban areas where buildings fill entire plots, is not built upon – but our synagogue grounds are walked upon, paved and driven over, played on, planted, and admired, reviled, or ignored. Are we being good stewards of this gift of good land?
The choices that synagogues make about landscaping carry many serious implications. To learn more about how to make your synagogue grounds greener and for ideas of projects your synagogue can implement, follow this link to COEJL's website. http://coejl.org/resources/greening-synagogues-synagogue-grounds/ Program provided by the Coalition on the Environment and Jewish Life (COEJL) www.coejl.org
The long term building project guide will also help you and your congregation figure out how to build green. The resources contained here are designed for synagogues now contemplating, planning, or involved in any kind of serious work on their buildings – new construction, expansion, renovation or retrofits.
Numerous synagogues – across movements, regions, demographics, and sizes – have already made a meaningful difference for the Earth through their buildings. To get this project kick-started, click the link listed below to connect to COEJL's guide, which has numerous projects and ideas for greening our operational buildings: http://coejl.org/resources/greening-synagogues-buildings/
Program provided by the Coalition on the Environment and Jewish Life (COEJL) www.coejl.org