Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Life, Carbon, Documentary, World, Planet, Footprint, Damage, Reality

Pages: 5

Words: 1375

Published: 2021/01/07

No Impact Man, a documentary following the journey of author Colin Beavan who makes the decision to attempt one year making drastic changes towards living without a negative impact to the planet. He lives in New York City with his wife and young daughter who went through the changes towards living a ‘greener’ life with him. Several aspects of their lives changed so that they were producing less damages pollutants responsible for the problems such as greenhouse gases that are a large environmental issue for the human race. The film displays the adjustments the family makes to see what life will be like for one year by giving up many luxuries in life that most people in the United States and other developed countries cannot imagine living without, such as toilet paper and electricity. The documentary is an eye-opening reality check for me as I begin to see that there is much more I can do without giving up toilet paper and electricity, yet still scale down the amount of damage my own carbon footprint is responsible for. I could not imagine adopting the lifestyle of Colin Beavan and his family, but changes can be made by anyone who is committed to the concept of the impact every single person can make through changing their wastefulness.
No Impact Man explores five different issues that were used in changing their lifestyles habits, worthy of helping minimize the environmental damage the Beavan family is responsible for. The shift in their lifestyle involved big changes in consumption, transportation, food, water, and energy. The way that they purchase and ate food was decided had multiple benefits with consumption, food, transportation, and energy. For example, by not eating meals out anymore, the use of containers and wastage of food was discontinued, as well as only purchasing foods that were within 250 miles from where they lived so that the reduction of gas emissions from food items that were shipped from faraway places could be minimized. Giving up all transportation that uses fuel was discontinued; instead they took bikes, scooter, walked up stairs to cut back on the fuel and energy waste. Dramatic choices such as these were made to address the issues that are known to be highly damaging to the planet.

Carbon Foot-print Calculation

The Nature Conservancy website offers a little survey that I took to get an idea of the carbon footprint that I am leaving in yearly through my consumption and usage of daily life activities. Unfortunately, after inputting the information into the carbon footprint calculator, I realized that I am doing more damage than the average American when it comes to the gas emissions I produce. To be honest, I did not think that my lifestyle was contributing that much to the destruction of our planet. According to the numbers at 31 tons of carbon dioxide pollution, I am producing above the average person in the United States. It is a harsh reality check for me, and very disturbing. It is unnerving as I begin to think of how many billions of people on the planet there are and how much damage that is being done on a yearly basis.

Green Living Quiz

Taking the green living quiz only made my reality harder to accept. I scored the lowest score under 27, leaving me at ‘Acorn Level’ showing me that I am rarely eco-friendly. Most of the time I do what works best for me without much consideration to how it impacts the planet. I do not think about the choices I make as being harmful. I just figure, I am only one person who is not perfect, so I assume it does not matter. When looking at the sections for the quiz I realized how many categories there are, which I never considered. If I had not even considered these parts, then why would I ever decide to make different options? In all honesty, there is some ignorance that I have to admit to in regard to being an environmentally conscious individual. I was thinking that I am eco-friendly because when I can I toss recycle items into trash cans labeled recycle only, or the fact that I do my best to turn off the water faucet while brushing my teeth. Apparently these choices are clearly not enough. Between watching the documentary, finding out my carbon foot print amount, and seeing the score from the green living quiz, I have some serious changes that need to be made.
After learning these things I cannot keep making the endless bad choices that I have been making. I cannot say that I will switch every category that I have been presented with, but I definitely will be making some changes towards a greener lifestyle.
The documentary affected me because I could not believe that a person would put their family through such torture. That is how the documentary occurred to me for a large portion of the film. I could appreciate the passionate plea towards helping the environment, but I found most of it a bit ridiculous and unrealistic. The shocker came to me as I found out the extremely high number that I received on the carbon-footprint calculator. It made me feel awful. To think that my carelessness is putting so much carbon dioxide into the air on a yearly basis brings the reality in my face in a way that it has never done before. It truly is a disturbing and embarrassing reality check. The green living quiz was also disheartening to me as I found more factual evidence showing me that I am one of the careless ones. I am one of the people helping to increase global warming and make the death of our planet a reality in a worse way than I expected. There were many ideas from the green living quiz that I plan to adopt in my life to take the steps to minimize the damage I produce as an individual.
One of the first steps to take that will not take too much effort is to properly separate and recycle my trash. It can be a bit of a nuisance when I have friends over and I have to collect the trash they create and separate it, but if I know that it is helping in a bigger way than I originally thought possible, then I must do it. Another easy change will be to switch out the light bulbs to more energy efficient bulbs, which will be beneficial financially as well. The last change I can commit to making as I work towards becoming less wasteful to the planet will be through conserving water. I am guilty of taking long hot showers that are completely unjustified. I turn my water off to brush, but then when it comes to washing dishes, I let the water run. These are simple things that I want to change after viewing the documentary and finding the numbers on my own carbon footprint damage.
My attitude has changed since watching the documentary and proceeding with the paper. Luckily the paper was associated with the documentary because it forced me to look at myself in a way that I had no done prior. If I saw the documentary without the work that was required afterwards, I would not have felt as strong of a need to make changes in my own life. I do think that the Beavan falls into the extreme end of the green life, and I cannot imagine myself living that way, not even for one year. I do think it is very easy to make some of the changes that I saw possible from the green living quiz. For now it will start with the recycling, energy efficient light bulbs, and water conservation, and maybe I will adopt new changes in the future. I plan to take my carbon footprint again in another six months to a year to hopefully see a number that is not as disturbing as the current one.

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WePapers. (2021, January, 07) Good Example Of No Impact Essay. Retrieved April 11, 2021, from https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-example-of-no-impact-essay/
"Good Example Of No Impact Essay." WePapers, 07 Jan. 2021, https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-example-of-no-impact-essay/. Accessed 11 April 2021.
WePapers. 2021. Good Example Of No Impact Essay., viewed April 11 2021, <https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-example-of-no-impact-essay/>
WePapers. Good Example Of No Impact Essay. [Internet]. January 2021. [Accessed April 11, 2021]. Available from: https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-example-of-no-impact-essay/
"Good Example Of No Impact Essay." WePapers, Jan 07, 2021. Accessed April 11, 2021. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-example-of-no-impact-essay/
WePapers. 2021. "Good Example Of No Impact Essay." Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. Retrieved April 11, 2021. (https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-example-of-no-impact-essay/).
"Good Example Of No Impact Essay," Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com, 07-Jan-2021. [Online]. Available: https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-example-of-no-impact-essay/. [Accessed: 11-Apr-2021].
Good Example Of No Impact Essay. Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/good-example-of-no-impact-essay/. Published Jan 07, 2021. Accessed April 11, 2021.
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