Green gadgets and a hydrogen-powered rock band are getting noticed

In the past 35 years, there’s been no shortage of inventive inventions aimed at reducing eco-footprints; we’ve come a long way from the old brick-in-the-toilet trick. Today’s new refrigerators use about a third of the power as ones sold 30 years ago, and the U.S. government has plans to boost fridge efficiency an additional 30 percent by 2011. Tank-less water heaters offer steamy scrubs while consuming less energy. But being green isn’t always about saving green. Organic furniture store owner Fred Shapiro says some 70 percent of his customer base consists of “cultural creatives” — style-savvy consumers who are willing to spend more for eco-friendly options that also look good. Green options also sound good, say members of Rhode Island-based band Protium, who are claiming the mantle of the first hydrogen-powered rock band. The six-member group will be rocking three fuel-cell generators to power their guitars and amps during an Earth Day concert.