As America seeks ways to gain energy independence and combat global warming, we must be sure not to ignore the low-hanging fruit on the energy tree: energy conservation and energy efficiency. As individuals, as businesses, and through our government, we must focus first and foremost on making our homes, businesses, and vehicles as efficient as possible. While I’m 100% behind developing solar and wind and other forms of clean, reliable, and affordable renewable energy — and have written a number of books on the subject and live on renewables myself — conservation and efficiency are the cheapeast, fastest, and most reliable ways to produce more energy and combat pollution. And, it’s renewable, too. Every step you and I take to conserve energy and use energy more efficiently pays dividends long into the future. It frees up energy that would have been wasted year after year after year. Energy efficiency measures we enact are the moral equivalent of a new oil well or natural gas deposit. Don’t wait for government to action. You can take steps now to build a more efficient and sustainable future. Start by driving smarter. Slow down. Drive the speed limit. Avoid jack rabbit starts…the list goes on. These are small steps, but when combined with efforts of millions of others, they can have a huge impact and usher us further along the path of a sustainable future.