High Gas Prices Making Americans Drive Less
"Two years of record-high gasoline prices have forced auto-crazed Americans to do something they haven't done in more than two decades: Drive less.
...to the surprise of many economists, U.S. motorists changed their ways enough to cut the nation's per-driver mileage by 0.4% in 2005, ending a string of increases dating back to 1980, government data show. Other reports over the last year on mass transit ridership, total miles driven nationwide, gasoline demand, vehicle sales and retail and restaurant spending reinforce the notion that U.S. drivers made significant - and in some cases, lasting - adjustments to offset steadily rising gasoline prices.
...It's a small but important shift for a nation that many believed was impervious to rising gas prices because drivers were unable or unwilling to rein in their gas-guzzling ways."