Even a 5% improvement in the efficiency of the nation's electricity grid would be equivalent to taking 53 million cars off the road, according to research from the U.S. government. The "smart grid" would allow consumers to tap into alternative energy such as wind, solar and geothermal. "Our energy problems essentially boil down to the fact that we waste too much energy and get too much of that energy from polluting sources," said Steven Biel, global warming campaigner for Greenpeace USA.

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