Did you know that when a phone charger is plugged into an outlet, it still uses power even if not hooked up to a phone? It may not seem like a lot of electricity, but factor in all Americans who engage in this lazy behavior, and the stats are truly shocking: All that wasted juice is enough to power 24,000 homes each year, or brew three-to-four million cups of coffee every day! Luckily, AT&T has a solution. This May, the company will start selling its ZERO charger, a mobile phone charger that eliminates vampire power consumption and charges phones more efficiently.

Unlike traditional cell phone chargers, which continue to draw power even after a phone is unplugged, the ZERO automatically senses when users disconnect their phones. The charger then immediately cuts the power supply from the wall socket, so even if a charger is left plugged in for days, it’s not using any electricity.

Obviously the charger may eliminate tons of wasted power use, but it’s got other green attributes, too. The device’s block-and-cable design will be compatible with future handset models, too, eventually decreasing the number of outdated chargers sent to landfills each year. The charger also powers phones more efficiently than traditional models, boasting a five-star efficiency rating (higher than standards outlined by the GSMA). Plus, the ZERO comes in 100-percent recycled paper packaging.

The ZERO goes on sale in May online and in AT&T stores, and will cost the same as current replacement chargers.

Via AT&T press release