NYC's No Impact Man makes an impact ... on me
Sun, Aug 16, 2009 at 8:02 PM
Recently the Los Angeles Times reported
that movie goers would rather "hug Transformers than trees." Documentaries with go-green themes are losing in the box office to the likes of Harry Potter and G.I. Joe. But who's to say that No Impact Man won't make an impact this fall?
Colin Beavan, a.k.a. No Impact Man, is releasing a book and movie on September 11 about his 2007 journey to be a true, self proclaimed environmentalist. With no electricity, automated transportation, refrigeration, bottled water and other consumption necessities, Beavan aimed to "end our environmental crisis and make a better place to live for everyone else and ourselves," at the expense of comfort to his family. He documents his yearlong family journey to save the planet on his blog
and the movie discusses how his family copes with living an almost Amish-like life.
I've read through some entries on his blog and I've been inspired to do something similar this summer ... to a less dramatic extent. This summer I have been living without air conditioning (except during a few hours of work for the last two weeks of July and the train rides -- sorry, I'm not perfect) by hiding in my attic and riding my bike to the train station every weekday. On weekends I either go to the beach or visit my grandparents (unfortunately for them, their apartment has no air conditioning, only a big fan that is turned off when I am present). I also try and do the little things like take long walks across Central Park, play baseball rather than watch it on TV, and cut my shower time in half. Needless to say, I haven't been nearly as successful as Colin in my almost ascetic lifestyle, but I am making some progress in terms of being less wasteful and extravagant.
Surprisingly, staying in the attic in 90 degree weather isn't too bad when there's minimal electricity on and little energy being used up around the house. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to convince my parents to join my difficult journey. Nevertheless, out of consideration for me they have spent most of their summer in a tiny air conditioned room. But hey, that's a start. Just think about how much energy is being saved when one small air conditioner is running instead of a gigantic central air conditioning system all around the house.
Anyway, as I have realized, this is all much easier said than done. As much as I'd like to be the next No Impact Woman, I still have a long way to go.
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