Just in time for Halloween comes the news that homeowners have a vampire-like threat to their electric bills looming within their homes. And, like the fictional vampires, this threat has to be invited into the home by the homeowners themselves.
More on the electronic Dracula residing in your house from CNN:
No garlic, wolfbane or crosses are needed to combat this menace. Just pull the plug. Whew! As usual--for better or worse--California was the first state to act on this threat.
A force as insidious as Dracula is quietly sucking a nickel of every dollar's worth of the electricity that seeps from your home's outlets.
Insert the little fangs of your cell phone charger in the outlet and leave it there, phone attached: That's "vampire" electronics.
Allow your computer to hide in the cloak of darkness known as "standby mode" rather than shutting it off: That's vampire electronics.
The latest estimates show 5 percent of electricity used in the United States goes to standby power, a phenomenon energy efficiency experts find all the more terrifying as energy prices rise and the planet warms. That amounts to about $4 billion a year.
The percentage could rise to 20 percent by 2010, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
What else can one say? Electric boo?
In California, lawmakers passed a proposal last year -- dubbed the Vampire Slayers Act -- to add vampire electronics labels to consumer products, detailing how much energy a charger, computer, DVD player, PlayStation, microwave or coffee maker uses when on, off or in standby mode.
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