I’m about to describe two homes, one belonging to the Oscar-winning former Vice President and star of An Inconvenient Truth Al Gore, the other to President George W. Bush. Can you tell which home belongs to which person?
House #1 consumes nearly 221,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity per year, more than 20 times the national average of 10,656 kWh. Last August alone, this house used 22,619 kWh, consuming more than twice as much electricity in one month as the average American family uses in an entire year. Also, the natural gas bills for this 10,000 square-foot 20-room mansion and guest house averaged $1,080 a month last year.
House #2 contains only 4,000 square feet, has 25,000 gallons of rainwater storage, gray water collection from sinks and showers for irrigation, passive solar, and geothermal heating and cooling. The system uses no fossil fuels such as oil or natural gas, and consumes 25% of the electricity required for a conventional heating/cooling system.
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