The Maranatha Temple exterior.

The 4,000 seat capacity Maranatha Church (née Temple) near Houston, Texas, when it was completed in 1984. The pastor compared his energy bills with area pastors with similar size churches and estimated he saves $60,000 per year in energy costs.

One of the major benefits to a church, school, or any institution in a Monolithic Dome is the energy savings. Recently, we completed a study of a 34,000 square foot church located near Houston, Texas, and determined it could pay for itself in energy savings.

The Monolithic dome church has been in use for more than ten years. We verified the estimated savings with the pastor. He tells us that our numbers are conservative when comparing the energy costs for the Monolithic Dome versus the conventional buildings of similar size in the Houston area. The numbers presented in the chart represent:

  1. The annual energy savings: They are increased by two percent per year through the 30-year study. The two percent is for inflation for energy costs — a conservative estimate.
  2. The energy fund represents the accumulation of the energy savings deposited in an investment paying interest at seven percent per annum.

Annual energy savings

The pastor reports saving $60,000 per year compared to similar area churches. We are using $50,000 for a more conservative comparison.

Year Annual Energy Savings (2%) Energy Savings Fund (7%)
1 $50,000 $50,000
2 $51,000 $104,500
3 $52,020 $163,835
4 $53,060 $228,364
5 $54,122 $298,471
6 $55,204 $374,568
7 $56,308 $457,096
8 $57,434 $546,527
9 $58,583 $643,367
10 $59,755 $748,157
11 $60,950 $861,478
12 $62,169 $983,950
13 $63,412 $1,116,238
14 $64,680 $1,259,055
15 $65,974 $1,413,163
16 $67,293 $1,579,378
17 $68,639 $1,758,574
18 $70,012 $1,951,686
19 $71,412 $2,159,716
20 $72,841 $2,383,737
21 $74,297 $2,624,896
22 $75,783 $2,884,422
23 $77,299 $3,163,631
24 $78,845 $3,463,930
25 $80,422 $3,786,827
26 $82,030 $4,133,935
27 $83,671 $4,506,981
28 $85,344 $4,907,814
29 $87,051 $5,338,412
30 $88,792 $5,800,893

The church facility cost approximately $1.2 million when it was constructed in 1984. Had the energy savings been invested as shown — by the thirteenth year the fund would equal the original price of the church. And at the end of thirty years, the fund would be equal to more than four times the original price of the church.

What is not shown here is the reduced cost at the time of construction of the heating and cooling equipment, as well as the overall maintenance cost for the heating and cooling system. Not only is there less cost for the heating and cooling system, but there is also less cost for the electrical system because it does not have to maintain such a large heating and cooling system.

Chart of the accumulated energy savings fund.

When energy savings are invested at 7 percent per annum the resulting savings would pay back the initial cost of the dome in less than 14 years.