How To Cover Your 'Carbon Footprints' At Home

Greg Whitmore isn't saving any time by going green at home. But that's all right with him.

"We spend about three hours a week on recycling alone, probably. Maybe about 15 hours overall on things like that," says the 29-year-old resident of Martha's Vineyard, Mass.

Whitmore is an ecologist for the Trustees of Reservations, a Massachusetts conservation group. He and his wife are avid gardeners and recyclers. "It's amazing how much of your trash is recyclable. We probably reduce down to a bag or a bag and a half a week."

Whitmore represents a growing number of Americans who are willing to sacrifice time and money to make their home life less damaging to the environment. A Gallup Poll reported in March that 78% of Americans believe that spending several thousand dollars to make their homes more energy-efficient is a good idea.

"Everything environmentally friendly costs more time and money, but it'll change," Whitmore says. "We're definitely not saving any money growing our own vegetables. But it's nice knowing where it came from, what's on it. It didn't travel a long way."

The ultimate goal, environmentalists say, is to reduce your "carbon footprint," the amount of carbon dioxide emissions that you generate while going about the activities of your daily life.