The year without toilet paper (NY Times) - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 03-22-2007, 04:30 PM
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Welcome to Walden Pond, Fifth Avenue style. Isabellas parents, Colin Beavan, 43, a writer of historical nonfiction, and Michelle Conlin, 39, a senior writer at Business Week, are four months into a yearlong lifestyle experiment they call No Impact. Its rules are evolving, as Mr. Beavan will tell you, but to date include eating only food (organically) grown within a 250-mile radius of Manhattan; (mostly) no shopping for anything except said food; producing no trash (except compost, see above); using no paper; and, most intriguingly, using no carbon-fueled transportation.



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#2 Old 03-22-2007, 05:50 PM
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Great article! I really enjoyed it. Thanks for posting!
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#3 Old 03-22-2007, 06:33 PM
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That was good. It makes me think of changes I could easily make to make less of an impact.

It is our choices that show what we truly are far more than our abilities. ~A. Dumbledore
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#4 Old 03-22-2007, 06:52 PM
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If they don't use toilet paper how do they get the... uh... poo off their bottoms? Depending where you live a bidet could be very environmentally unsound. Oh yeah, they do use water. So much for water restrictions.

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#5 Old 03-23-2007, 05:04 AM
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Interesting, but it brings the "is veg*nism bourgeois" thread to mind - how bourgeois can environmentalism get?! Living in a Manhattan apartment, but like in a 19th century village... Rather than not using toilet paper, I'd advise them to cut out the dairy from their diet, this should reduce the ecological impact much more than - or how do they clean? ETA: Using a bidet (instead of paper and for environmental reasons) really wouldn't make sense.

Since they can't use any other (news)paper either (to cut into pieces as toilet paper, as people did after the war for example), maybe they collected leaves in Central Park and stored them in a (handmade within 250 miles) basket in their bathroom?

Meat seems not to be mentioned in the article, I guess it's okay if the animals were raised and slaughtered within a 250 mile radius?

Anyway, I really don't want to get into a rant about this, as I think every single move made towards environmentally sound behaviour is good. But maybe these people have just gone from one extreme (wrt their life before the experiment) to another, which might be interesting to people who are already interested in environmental issues. People who have no interest in environmentalism or don't feel any need to reduce their footprint will just be shaking their heads when reading sth like this I guess...
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#6 Old 03-23-2007, 09:58 AM
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I know it's not terribly constructive to the thread, but upon reading the article and visiting the author's site, my immediate thoughts were, "Ugh, rich people."



I can't relate to them at all; shopping binges before the experiment, a cleaning lady, going out to eat frequently, etc.



In addition, I found the information on his site very limited. For example, when people would ask very pointed questions about how he does certain very mundane tasks with no impact, he sort of avoids the answer. In order to contribute to a no-impact society, wouldn't it be better for him to contribute his techniques?



Again, ugh, rich people!
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#7 Old 03-23-2007, 01:22 PM
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i think some of their rules are rather wonky (they send the paper cup back because they don't want to throw it out--what do they think the restaurant is going to do with it?) some are commonsense (reusable containers, trying to eat locally).



i think it also helps that he is basically a stay at home parent. that frees up a lot of time to do things liek: make homemade yogurt and vinegar and toiletries.



i think things like this also again put the focus strictly on individuals and not at all on corporations which are the biggest part of the problem.
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#8 Old 04-07-2007, 08:35 AM
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Amazing article. I just read ?newsweeks? 51 ways to help the environment and am full of inspiration and new ideas. I found the article pretty inspiring.



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#9 Old 04-09-2007, 11:26 AM
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Huh? To read the article, you have hve a subscription to the NY Times, or cough up $4.95 to read that one single article.!!!!
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#10 Old 04-09-2007, 11:43 AM
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yeah, NYT makes their articles available for one week before they go into the archives which you have to pay for... I can't even access the article any more.

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#11 Old 04-09-2007, 04:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WonderRandy View Post

yeah, NYT makes their articles available for one week before they go into the archives which you have to pay for... I can't even access the article any more.



I registered with the NY Times for free. I had no problem viewing the article, but had to look at some dopey ad first. Possibly they restrict the number of times you can go back and view it. I did save a copy of the "printable" version of the article. PM me if you want it.
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#12 Old 04-09-2007, 04:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiz View Post

If they don't use toilet paper how do they get the... uh... poo off their bottoms? Depending where you live a bidet could be very environmentally unsound. Oh yeah, they do use water. So much for water restrictions.



They said something about using bowls of water, so I assume this is the same system that is used in India.



BTW, where is zoebird when you really need her?
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#13 Old 04-10-2007, 05:15 AM
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That's what I was going to say Joe, I simply registered for free and read the article. But this was a few days ago.



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#14 Old 04-10-2007, 06:44 AM
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Originally Posted by bethanie View Post

That's what I was going to say Joe, I simply registered for free and read the article. But this was a few days ago.



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Thank you for "backing up" my story.
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