Let's pick the biggest, lowest hanging fruit!
For example, while California has been a model for stabilizing total energy consumption for the past 30 years in spite of its population growth, there is still only something on the order of 12% market penetration of compact fluorescent lamps in the residential market. The reason frequently given when I raise this point is ‘color rendition.’ This may have been the case at some point in the past, but a wide range of color rendition is available in CFLs now. Go to a good lighting specialty store where they display the range of CFLs available and you will be able to see this. When an investment of $2.50 to $5.00 results in a lamp lifetime saving of $40 to $50, it is hard to explain. Potential electrical energy saving — huge!
Now for the really big one — passive solar. Why do we restrict the minimum size and amount of opening area of windows and yet let people put windows on any side of a building regardless of compass orientation? Passive solar is the invisible low-hanging fruit. Use overhangs and properly oriented and sized windows and you can save half the heating costs for a house in most North American climates, far more in sunnier, warmer locations like nearly the entire west coast and southwest. Get a clue! Heating is nearly half of residential energy use, therefore, nearly 1/3 of building energy use and nearly 15% of all U.S. energy use.
Let’s pick the biggest, lowest hanging fruit first — no new technology is required.
Anybody out there know how to do this?