The Greening of the U.S. Consumer

Consumers today are reducing their carbon footprint and their spending. The trend could offset the government's stimulus plans
With 80,000 consumer and business drivers around the world, Zipcars offers commuters an eco-friendly alternative to car ownership. Scott Barbour/Getty Images

Lisa Goodson, a 38-year-old mother of three children 5 and under, reuses printer paper by flipping every sheet over when she's done using one side. She wears a sweatshirt to keep warm during the day when she dials down the heat in her house in Greenville, S.C. These small gestures are part of Goodson's personal crusade to reduce her carbon footprint. "I think twice before buying anything for the kids, and I've even talked to my parents about holding back on gifts," says Goodson, who thinks her house is already loaded up with too much stuff and has lately been cleaning out toy boxes and donating toys to charity.

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