Sunday, October 18, 2009

And we're off!

Here is it...the beginning of the official No Impact Experiment, A One-Week Carbon Cleanse. Today’s challenge:

Consumption (aka Don’t Buy Stuff!)

Did you know that:

“...ninety-nine percent of the stuff we harvest, mine, process, transport--99 percent of the stuff we run through this production system is trashed within six months.”
Annie Leonard, The Story of Stuff

Frightening. When I think about the amount of items I purchase and what ultimately happens to those items I urgently “needed”...I personally contributed to that statistic. It’s not just the impact on the landfills as we junk our purchases--but think about the amount of petroleum needed to produce and transport those quickly trashed items.

Our hero, Colin Beavan, No Impact Man, shares a terrific list to get us started on our journey. Be sure to check out the project website ( to read the manual--you’ll find great ideas, like:
  • Type a list of the stuff you “need” to buy, and figure out what you can do without this week. Cross off those items. Borrow, buy used, or make your own items that you can’t live without this week.
  • Track your trash. Keep a reusable bag handy, fill it with your trash, recyclables, and food waste from today. Take a bag with you if you leave the house and put your trash in there. Take a look at what you accumulate throughout the day.
  • Do you need to shop? Can you think of anything more fun or productive to do with your shopping time?
If you plan to play along this week, please leave a comment so we can all support one another! You can also sign up at the official No Impact Experiment website, where you’ll find great ideas to get you through the week.

I’ll check in tonight to let you know how the Adolf family survives Day One. (Shoot...why did I just eat that Special K cereal bar? Now I have to add the wrapper to my bag of trash.)

See you tonight!

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