No Impact Week

No Impact Week

If you traditionally start off every New Year with a resolution, think about making it a No Impact Week. YES! Magazine is kicking off such a week starting on January 2, 2011. Also known as a “One Week Carbon Cleanse,” No Impact Week is about assessing our current carbon uses. As the experiment website says, it’s not a challenge intended to get people to give up their creature comforts or to even make a lasting change, but rather to just see how much they use, see how they can do without it for a week, and whether or not all of that consumption is even necessary—or wanted. In other words, does it really contribute to one’s happiness? Or does it simply eat at one’s supply of money and time?

In order to get started, click here to register. You will receive an online informational packet that is not to be printed out, but simply read online. Feel free to invite friends and family, as well as to share the week with people on various social networking sites.

Each day during the challenge, a new activity/challenge will be presented for participants to follow. They are invited to take part in that day’s challenge as well as write a blog or vlog about the experience. Each day  is also accompanied by a list of nonprofit resources and actions to take that are not the challenge itself, but allow the participant to go even further into that day’s goal—as well as to make an immediate difference somehow.

The daily themes include trash, consumption, transportation, energy, and food. One participant blogged about the experience here, sharing some information that 2011 participants may expect during their challenges. The goal on day one is to “live a fuller and happier life by buying less stuff.” It looks like each day has its own special motto like this; for example, day two is “burn calories, not fossil fuels.” (I love that! I’d say I want it on my bumper sticker, but that would be more than a little ironic.) It also looks like nothing is impossible; for example, rather than, “Don’t drive at all!” the task for transportation is simply to switch to the lowest carbon emissions means of transportation possible.

To learn more, get tips from No Impact Man, hear his interview with Amy Goodman, and learn about “Christmas with no presents,” click here.