Those vying for the greenest home award will face stiff competition from Frances Whitehead and James Elniski. The two, whose home was recently profiled in the New York Times, spent $40,000 last year to buy and install wind turbines for their Chicago apartment. Given that the turbines save the couple about $500 a year, the technology should pay for itself after 80 years of use. Ouch. The couple insists costs are not the objective, rather they prefer to live in a sustainable manner and have constructed their home to fit the ideal despite cost. Regardless of long-term cost-saving, their home is a marvel of green design. It features photovoltaic and thermal panels, radiant heating, geothermal desuperheaters, dual-flush toilets, a low-flow showerhead and lots of other energy-generating and saving devices. It’s also beautiful. Check out the pictures.

Credit: New York Times article