J500 Media and the Environment

Get your share of $3 billion dollars! (not a scam!!!) by meganr21
February 27, 2009, 12:49 am
Filed under: Society + Media | Tags: , , ,

Lately I’ve taken to listening to planet green podcasts and one recent topic called ‘Save Electricity and Money’ struck a cord with me. Not only is it really easy to make a difference, you can save money too.

 A Cornell University energy expert estimates that vampires cost Americans $3 billion a year. No, not the pale, blood-sucking, cape wearing ones who can’t stand the light of day – rather your appliances! So what are these vampires? They’re electronic devices that suck electricity even when they’re not being used. When I read this figure I took a look around my room and was ashamed when I realized I had 11 devices plugged into one wall.

Until I did some research I was like most people – under the impression that once a device is turned off, the electricity to that appliance is stopped. While that may be true for some gadgets (like my energy star printer), there are many culprits scattered throughout the average household that continue to suck vast amounts of energy, even when turned off. 

So how do you find these fugitive appliances? Simple – the Kill-A-Watt. The Kill-A-Watt is a cool gadget allows you measure the energy a device uses in standby mode and figure out how much it’s costing you each year.

Now that you know who your worst offenders are you can do something about them. If you can’t afford to by all new energy efficient appliances, Bits ltd has developed the Smart Strip, a power strip that cuts off the supply of electricity when an appliance is turned off. The Smart Strip will pay for itself within the first 6 weeks with electricity savings. It’s easy, in no time you’ll be slaying your vampires and saving yourself around $200 a year.

 -Megan Richards

thanks to global rooftop energy initiative for the picture