No Impact Man

Seasons greetings and all that. It’s not a big deal for me and I tend not to celebrate it, so no big thoughts on the New Year from me!

I followed the No Impact Man blog for a while, before I decided I needed to cut down on my  internet time. So when the book came out I got on the waiting list at my library for it.

I read it twice in quick succession and really enjoyed it. I don’t want to give a review of it, as there are professional critics out there, but I want to talk about how it made me think.

There are a lot of facts in this book many of which are quite horrifying. But I found it all made me feel guilty and I should be focused on how I can improve my life.

One of his main points is how much easier it is living in the city to be green. I can relate to that – when I lived in London I could easily get everywhere I wanted to go, I didn’t have a car, it was easier to live in a greener way. In fact for just under a year I lived in a community, with the aim of living lighter on the earth.

Here in the suburbs it is more difficult to be as green, but I think I am using that as an excuse. By moving in with my partner I have had to change many things (he was 36 when I moved in, me 29 and we were both set in our ways somewhat!), but I think I have changed many of my eco ways for the worse, watching TV,  particularly eating take ways much more frequently and using my car to get around when I could get my act together and cycle. Part of the problem is I can’t get access to the bike as my back gate has swollen shut. Excuse alert!

I am already doing a lot of the basic green stuff, making my own beauty products, not getting plastic bottles and bags etc, growing my own veg, making a lot of my own food, but I think I am just doing the easy stuff and I can push myself more.

But one things that I found most thought-provoking was his mention of the Story of Stuff. Now, I have seen this linked to on many of the blogs I read and yet I have continued to ignore it. Why is that? Am I afraid of what I might see? Or is it a touch of arrogance on my part? If that is that case why haven’t I watched it, just to prove myself right?

So, I commit to watching this and posting my thoughts on it within the next 2 weeks.

Lastly, something I found very interesting is he came to the conclusion that we should be focusing on what we gain by being green – mainly communities and better relationships with people around us – saying (paraphrase)

We need to draw lines around people, not between them

That is something I like! For me this is what the blogging community is, what the D2E forum does, and I think this is the fundamental key for getting ourselves out of the environmental mess we are in.

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One thought on “No Impact Man

  1. Eilleen says:

    No Impact Man is pretty amazing huh. I have to admit, I haven’t read his book but did follow him for awhile.

    I think that one of the biggest “lies” perpetuated by over-consumption is the notion that pure independence is “good”. Its a lie in two ways – one that it is good and two that it is actually possible. We are ALWAYS living within communities and pretending we don’t only damages that community (whether we know it or not).

    I have made a conscious effort to get to know my neighbours and my community – even if they don’t share my values or beliefs. The funny thing is that as we have gotten to know and appreciate each other, we are steadily influencing each other positively.

    I look forward to hearing what you thought about the story of stuff. I put off watching it too. 🙂

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