Tucsonans may have noticed large solar installations at houses of worship around the city, where congregants say governmental incentives have helped them meet environmental and spiritual goals.

Benedictine Sanctuary, St. Francis in the Foothills United Methodist Church and Temple Emanu-El are among the houses of worship using solar energy.

Members of these congregations say they were able to make projects work because of state and federal incentives, working with a third-party financiers and contracting with a solar installation company.

In some cases, the solar systems in parking lots serve to collect energy from the sun on top while providing shade below, or their dual panels work with the sun or its reflection underneath.

That's how one of the installation functions at St. Francis, where Mari Sorri worked with fellow parishioners to move forward with the project.

She says these systems make a lot of sense in Arizona, where the sun is free and abundant.

"It's frustrating that more is not done but it's also exciting that something is being done especially here in Tucson," Sorri says.