Every man living on the face of the earth is always determined to leave an impact and be famous; this means that most try to be extraordinary in their own way so as to win attention. Collin Beavan, is however determined not to leave any impact on the environment in that he does not want to do anything that affects the environment negatively. In his quest, he was able to change his life in that what would be considered impossible would actually be tried. And what is considered as absolute absurdness and inconvenient can be learnt so as to deal with the social problems and make a difference. This essay agrees with Collin Beaven in his actions to have no negative impact on the environment so as to make a greater positive impact in society. The paper gives a summary of the experience he and his family goes through and his ideas of being a no impact man.
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Collin Beaven and his family focus on having a zero negative impact on the environment; this is a great commitment as he has to live without all the luxuries he is used to; in addition to necessities he needs. He starts an experience that lasts a whole year which he does with his wife and toddler and consequently the family dog (Beavan, 56). They shun any activities that harm the environment including avoiding takeaway foods to evade packaging waste. They also walk or ride bicycles to anywhere they are going to reduce carbon emissions from fossil fuel. They do not use electricity in the house, in that there is no air conditioner, no TV, no refrigeration and no access to the internet. They purchase foods from local groceries that have very little carbon emissions and used cloth diapers for the toddler (Beavan, 63). This made life a living hell but because of his love for the environment he would have done all this. His is a story of how a single person can make a difference if he or she is focused and determined.
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No living is worthwhile if it does not make an impact in other peoples’ lives or change life positively in a single aspect. It is not the number of people that matter during the start of the impact but it is their dedication and selflessness that will keep pushing the individual to achieve the results intended. Living in the middle of a city and deciding to be eco-friendly gives him a great challenge since most activities of the city are carbon emitting; in addition such activities are considered as basic but he is able to deny himself all of the pleasures just to change the globe environmentally.
He is bold and courageous in this no impact lifestyle and tries to proof his enemies that it is possible and more satisfying and that though it is hard the contribution made to the globe is very significant since it has impacted on the future. Despite, recommending radical changes to a problem the book teaches the readers that they should always face their personal responsibilities without minding what other say on it. The reader should always be focused on leaving a positive impact that can change the future instead of living comfortable and ruining the future which is more important.
For example, the people who sacrificed their lives in historic times such as Mahatma Gandhi an Martin Luther King Jr. did so selflessly and they changed the future. They are always celebrated by their self denial and vision and have an impact in every aspect in society. They were able to face the problems they had in their times such as racial discrimination in ways that would be described as absurd and unimaginable. They never relented in their call for change and reforms and this made them leave an impact. For Collin Beaven, he faces his current social problems and disaster i.e. environmental disaster in a way that everyone would not prefer.
By changing his lifestyle just to save the environment; he becomes a hero and a perfect example, to be emulated by all those who love the environment. He challenges those who fight for the environment in a cowardice manner; in that they advocate for environmental reforms yet they still contribute to degradation through their ways of life. This ironic title “No Impact Man” gives a twist to how he can make a huge impact by not having a negative impact on the environment. This is in line with Martin Luther King Jr. quotes ““If you can't fly then run, if you can't run then walk, if you can't walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward” (goodreads.com, par 6). In that it focuses on forward progress in any activity and despite the difficulties keep on moving without looking back.
In conclusion, the question on the cover of the book “can you save the planet without driving your family crazy?” is answered by the sacrifice everyone must take to ensure the future is secure. It all starts with an individual then moves to society and this can be understood by only understanding the benefits that are to be enjoyed if purpose is achieved. Collins method may be radical but it shows the urgent need for fast action to save the environment that continues to be depleted every single minute. Direct action is never outdated and is relevant in today’s society, since it will always be effective in society to force people understand the need to do certain things.
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