A pleasant winter


This site will come in handy for US consumers facing higher heating costs, this winter. Devised by the country's Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), it gives homeowners customized recommendations on how to cut their energy use and save on utility bills.

Homeowners have to enter their zip code, type in how their homes are heated and cooled, and the type of water heater they have. Next comes a list of energy savings steps, tailored to the homeowner's region, to cut energy use such as sealing air leaks, adding more insulation or installing a programmable thermostat.

"When it comes to saving energy, a lot of times, people don't know where to start,' said Maria Vargas of the EPA.

The site provides information on the many energy-saving appliances and products available and their related tax credits.For example, homeowners can save up to US $200 on their tax bill by installing certain storm windows and US $500 with new insulation. Homeowners can also see how much money they could save on their energy bills and how much their global warming emissions would be reduced from the upgrades.