Step by Step:
I’ve divided the path to renewable energy into three levels: Easy, Intermediate, and Total Commitment. Everyone should start with “Easy” and work their way up. That way you can snag the low hanging fruit with the most impact per dollar spent before proceeding up to larger ticket items that ultimately have the ability to move you into the land of the carbon neutral. By following the steps in order, you will also use the best strategy for decreasing your green house gas emissions. For instance, it would be hard to know exactly how much electricity you will use when sizing your solar array, if you haven’t selected the type of electric water heater you will install.
By completing the steps in order, you will make the most out of every dollar spent. Whether you are making the changes for reasons of national security, the environment, or because you wish there weren’t so many kids with asthma, the best approach is to make sure your money goes as far as possible.
Lighting, Heating, and Air Conditioning make up 60% of a home’s energy use. Find out the simple, quick, and cost effective way to make a big dent in that percentage, while making your life more convenient and more comfortable in the process.
I’ve provided instructions on how to do all of the worthwhile projects to quickly reduce energy usage. Some of these projects are only for the highly motivated DIYer or a contractor specializing in the work, but they’re all cost effective means of shifting to renewable energy. I also share the best ways to transition to 100% electric energy usage and explain why that is important. Finally, I look at a list of common missteps in the process. Many myths have grown up over the years as to what constitutes going green. Avoiding needless projects will save you time and money that can instead be used to get just a little closer to a zero emissions lifestyle.
While not for everyone, this final step will take you to zero emissions and 100% renewable energy. This even includes what you should do if you want to offset any plane trips, long distance drives, or other emissions creating behavior that is unavoidable in your life. (Even if you try your hardest, it is nearly impossible to end a single month without puffing on fossil fuels at one point or another.)