Today I went to an event for this environmental organization that recommends that people go vegetarian to help the environment:
It was held at the house of a member whose home, built in 1915, runs completely on clean renewable energy. He pays less in utilities than I do for a one bedroom apartment. He did all of this to his house on less than $8000.
You can easily walk past his house, or walk into it and not notice anything different. Sort of like riding in a hybrid car and thinking it is just like a regular car. His home is just like a regular house.
He showed us a ten minute video about his house that included a lot of practical tips. One of them was to hook as many appliances as you can up to power strips that have an off switch. He explained that when you turn many appliances off they still draw tiny amounts of power. He told us that if everyone in the US used power strips the energy savings from stopping these energy leaks would be enough to power Chicago.
Next weekend, I am visiting home depot to buy power strips.