Bubba in Brooklyn! Bill Clinton visits Bed-Stuy holy house

Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton greets parishioners as an eco-friendly church in Bed-Stuy.
Photo by Todd Maisel

The 42nd President of the United States of America finally made the trip out to Brooklyn on Tuesday, when he visited a Bedford-Stuyvesant house of worship that was recently retrofitted with new green technology funded through the Clinton Foundation. 

The church, Cornerstone Baptist Church on Madison Street near Lewis Avenue received several energy efficiency upgrades, which President Bill Clinton praised as essential in the fight against climate change. 

“This is a picture through which we can see a better future,” said Clinton.

The 102-year-old church was outfitted with high-tech, but low-cost eco-friendly technology, including efficient lights and a new cooling system, which Clinton said proves that you don’t have to break the bank to do your part for Mother Earth. 

“Some of the lowest cost responses are what you see happening in this church, and they all buy us 10, 20, 30 years before the worst happens for us to fix the whole thing.” 

Donnell Baird shows the former president a map of BlocPower initiatives. Photo by Todd Maisel

The retrofit was handled by BlocPower, an energy startup founded by  Donnel Baird courtesy of funding provided by the Clinton Global Initiative University. Baird committed to lowering energy costs across the country for small businesses, churches, and non-profits. Since committing in 2013, Baird has retrofitted over 1,000 locations in American cities. 

In addition to the ecological benefits of the new green tech, church staff estimate the improvements will save them 30 to 40 percent a year on energy bills, allowing them to invest in other things, such as their 18-unit building of apartments for seniors. 

The former president has made outfitting old buildings with green tech one of his foundation’s signature causes since he left office. The Clinton Climate Project was heavily involved in retrofitting the Empire State Building, which lead to a 38 percent reduction in energy use for the iconic Manhattan skyscraper. 

“I really believe that the most dangerous threat to our civilization over the next 30 years. . . is going to be climate change,” he said on Tuesday.