Why Americans Love To Shop And What It's Doing To The Planet : Consider This from NPR Buying stuff is a part of this country's DNA. It's a tradition that really took off near the end of World War II, when the American economy was thriving and the market exploded with products Americans didn't even know they wanted. And even in an economy rocked by a pandemic, buying is on track to exceed 2020 levels this holiday season.

The result of all that spending means consumption drives 70% of our country's GDP, but it's also the leading driver of nearly every environmental issue our planet faces.

Journalist J.B. MacKinnon, who also wrote "The Day the World Stops Shopping, How Ending Consumerism Saves the Environment and Ourselves," discusses how curbing consumption could positively affect a warming planet.

In participating regions, you'll also hear a local news segment that will help you make sense of what's going on in your community.

Email us at considerthis@npr.org.

Why Americans Love To Shop And What It's Doing To The Planet

Why Americans Love To Shop And What It's Doing To The Planet

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People shop in The Galleria mall during Black Friday on November 26, 2021 in Houston, TX. Brandon Bell/Getty Images hide caption

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Brandon Bell/Getty Images

People shop in The Galleria mall during Black Friday on November 26, 2021 in Houston, TX.

Brandon Bell/Getty Images

Buying stuff is a part of this country's DNA. It's a tradition that really took off near the end of World War II, when the American economy was thriving and the market exploded with products Americans didn't even know they wanted. And even in an economy rocked by a pandemic, buying is on track to exceed 2020 levels this holiday season.

The result of all that spending means consumption drives 70% of our country's GDP, but it's also the leading driver of nearly every environmental issue our planet faces.

Journalist J.B. MacKinnon, who also wrote "The Day the World Stops Shopping, How Ending Consumerism Saves the Environment and Ourselves," discusses how curbing consumption could positively affect a warming planet.

In participating regions, you'll also hear a local news segment that will help you make sense of what's going on in your community.

Email us at considerthis@npr.org.

This episode was produced by Jonaki Mehta and Elena Burnett. It was edited by Ashley Brown and Lee Hale with help from Courtney Dorning. Our executive producer is Cara Tallo.