Climate change is accelerating, causing an increase in deadly climate events. This past year record-breaking hurricanes, devastating wildfires and soaring temperatures pummeled our planet.

Many organizations recognize that they play a role in reducing their carbon footprint. And The Associated began this commitment to sustainability more than a decade ago.

“That decision,” says Ben Gershowitz, vice president of facilities at The Associated, “is part of our corporate mission and values, which is deeply rooted in the teachings of Jewish culture. It drives our commitment to be good stewards of the environment.”

From solar farms to green energy loans … from reforestation to education … here are a few ways that The Associated is going green.

As part of these efforts, The Associated entered into an agreement to have a solar farm constructed on a warehouse complex in Baltimore City by the end of the year. When operational this year, it will offset 50% of the electrical needs for the entire Associated system, which includes its headquarters on Mt. Royal Ave., two JCCs and other owned buildings that house its many agencies.

Concurrently, Pearlstone, an agency of The Associated, is leading by example through the installation of solar panels on the rooftop of its lodge buildings. Not only will it produce clean energy but will save the organization close to $10,000 each year.

Community members also can take advantage of a partnership between Pearlstone and Neighborhood Sun to help the environment. All residents who pay an electric bill can subscribe and receive credits on these bills

“Less pollution, cheaper bills, investment in the local economy an shared community action are a few of the benefits of Community Solar,” says Joan Plisko, Pearlstone’s Community Sustainability Director.

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The Associated Contributors are writers from The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore.