Energy Production Pays Off for Eastern Mennonite Missions

Wouldn’t it be nice to go to your mailbox and find a check for more than $21,000 made payable to your business?

Sure, we all get those scam junk mail checks from time to time, but this was from PP&L Electric Utilities. Our friends at Eastern Mennonite Missions were the recipients of this check.

Why did Eastern Mennonite Missions (EMM) receive this check?

PP&L has rewarded EMM for producing, on average, 21-kilowatt hours of electricity from June through August when energy demand is higher.

How is EMM producing energy? With solar.

Early 2022 MVE Group finished installing a 61.5 kW PV system on EMM’s new location in the city of Lancaster. From the street level, you may recognize this building as Hub 450.

How does this incentive from PP&L work?

PP&L Electric Utilities rolled out a program in 2021 that incentivizes commercial customers that help add additional power to the grid during peak demand times. PP&L averages the amount of energy generated by your PV system during the hours of 2 pm through 6 pm during June through August and pays you up to $1,000 per kilowatt (kW) of demand reduction. EMM is expected to produce an average of 21 kW during those peak times, as mentioned earlier, and was eligible for a $21,000 check.

This program is a win-win for businesses and non-profits installing solar PV systems and PP&L. The utility company would need to add additional costly resources to meet those energy demands.

EMM began the process of looking into solar about two years ago. According to EMM, solar was not a financial decision but more of an environmental decision coupled with their pact to be good stewards of the natural resources God has given us. In turn, they will use those resources to positively impact the neighborhoods and communities they serve.

EMM was grateful to receive this $21,000 check from PP&L and will put it to good use in serving the community, says Micah Brickner of EMM.

“We’re exploring ways to utilize this rebate to make the Hub 450 building more helpful and hospitable for the increased usage we’ve experienced in the past year. This rebate allows us to think through critical facility needs in ways that will help us better carry out our mission of crossing cultures in Lancaster.”

Through Hub 450, EMM serves the diverse and multicultural city of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Lancaster City has become a place of hope and opportunity for immigrant refugees around the globe. Hub 450 operates extensively to build connections and provide an affordable and accessible space for those providing services and resources to immigrant refugees.

Many of those resources include:

  • ESL classes (English as a second language).
  • Trauma response opportunities.
  • Commercial kitchen access and rental.
  • Community use for events.
  • Economic and small business opportunities.
  • Tutoring.
  • Youth programs.
  • Citizenship classes.

EMM works with many organizations to see how they can provide space and partnership with those passionate about serving. With constant activity in the building, energy usage can be extensive. Utilizing solar has dramatically reduced energy usage costs which are indirectly reinvested into their mission.

In 2022 Hub 450 has served more than 120 refugees from about 12 countries.


You could say solar is being used to energize Eastern Mennonite Missions.

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