CNN has a featured story of an Arlington Virginia family who decided to take positive action to reduce their energy bills. Their energy bill went from approx. $150 a month down to less than $30 a month doing just a few simple things anyone can do.
The family's solar set-up uses "net-metering" which means the excess energy produced from the panels on their roof is fed back into "the grid." The 12 panels on the roof feed the collected energy from the sun into their "inverter" located in their basement.
To reduce their home energy costs the family has started doing simple things such as:
* Ditch the dryer and use a clothesline.
* Started cooking meals in a solar cooker.
* Use small solar panels to power their personal electronics such as their cell phones and iPods.
* Fire up their electric bike to run errands (the bike is strong enough to pull a trailer!).
The family believes the solar panel system they have will last another 30 years giving them free energy for what may amount to the rest of their lives.