You may be surprised at how much energy is being used with no benefit to the person paying for it. I recently decided to deal with my standby energy or vampire energy and it seems to be saving me between $50-$70 per month.
I simply but a power switch near my 2 tv's and plugged in the tv, vcr and game system into it. When they aren't in use the swich goes off and nothing is using electricity. I also unplug all chargers when they aren't being used. I charge my electric toothbrush once a week. I unplug my laptop when not in use. I usually let it run on battery the last hour or 2 I have it on. My sons desktop and all of it's components are plugged into a battery backup, so when he shuts down his computer he flips the switch on the battery back up, why charge a full battery.
The last 2 months utility bills have been $70 less than the same months last year. I've done other things to save energy, but most of the savings are from the above changes.
Here is my standard going green blurb. I hope it's helpful.
Going green is easy, there are so many great resources about the subject. My personal favorite is "The Green Book" which has parts of its book online as well at www.readthegreenbook.com.
As I have been striving to "Go Green" I realize it is like stepping back in time without getting rid of my modern conveniences. I'm doing many things I learned as a child, like line drying my clothes, sweeping instead of vacuuming, opening the windows in the morning to catch the cool breeze, only buying what I need instead of everything that looks cool, growing some of my own food, and canning what I can't eat now.
To me "going Green" is a frame of mind. Do what fits your lifestyle and do the easy things first, it is a process and like dieting if you go to radical to soon, you are more likely to go back to bad habits. I also believe there are good, better, best choices in most things. If you aren't ready to start a home garden, then try finding a farmers market, until you locate one look for produce grown as close to home as possible and go organic when available.
Many people think "going green" is expensive, I disagree. Some changes may take an initial investment, but they usually have a short payoff time. Things like weatherstiping and insulation cost, but the energy savings will add up quickly. You may need to purchase reusable bags, but most stores give you a 5 or 10 cent credit, so you are paid back within a few months.
My top tips are make your home more energy efficient, that also means using natural light, cooling and heating.
Reduce your packaging, if you eat more fresh food you will generally reduce packaging, it's the same thing they tell dieters, shop the perimiter, that is where all the meat, dairy and produce are located. Only buy what you will use, many Americans throw away a lot of unused food. Buy in bulk, that doesn't just mean large packages, but that area with the bins that you buy only what you plan on using.
Replace disposable items with durable items, if you eat outside often and use disposable paper or plastic plates, it is a wise investment to purchase a set of reusable plastic plates. Replace disposable razors, diapers and cleaning products like swiffer. Avoid bottled water, get a home filter like Pur or Brita.
Recycle, www.earth911.org will help you locate the nearest recycle center. I try to only purchase plastics that are #1 or #2, they are more easily recycled. I also buy recycled products when available, that includes paper towels, napkings, toilet paper, tissue, school/office supplies and clothing.
Detox your cleaning, vinegar and baking soda clean almost anything, they can even losen a hair clog. Seventh Generation and Method are a couple mainstream brands that are very earth friendly.
Just start small and build from there, don't get overwhelmed.