Colin Beavan

Colin Beavan

No Impact Man to Speak, Campus to Celebrate with No Impact Week

August 24, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. – “No Impact Man” is coming to Illinois Wesleyan University, and the University is celebrating with a week of the No Impact Experiment.

Author Colin Beavan, known for his blog and book, No Impact Man: The Adventures of a Guilty Liberal Who Attempts to Save the Planet and Discoveries He Makes About Himself and Our Way of Life in the Process (Picador, 2009), will address the President’s Convocation at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 8, in Westbrook Auditorium of Presser Hall (1210 N. Park St., Bloomington). The title of his speech will be "No Impact Man." The event is free and open to the public.

Beavan gained national attention with his blog, which chronicled a year he and his family attempted to live without negatively impacting the environment. Throughout the year, Beavan, his wife and their daughter, tried to produce no trash, went without electricity, rode in no cars or taxis, ate only locally produced food, and avoided all paper products, including toilet paper. “You have to give Colin Beavan credit,” said The Boston Globe. “The man put his money where his mouth is. A self-proclaimed ‘guilty liberal’ tired of the world’s general ecological decline, he decided to change his life. And in no small way.” A documentary was released in 2009, detailing Beavan’s efforts.

All incoming Illinois Wesleyan students read Beavan’s book for the Summer Reading Program, which is part of “Turning Titan,” the new student orientation program on campus. Students met in discussion groups with faculty and staff to share their impressions of the book and what impact it made on them.

To celebrate Beavan’s visit to campus, the University Wellness Center is encouraging all faculty, staff and students to participate in a “No Impact Experiment” from Sept. 12-19. It will be one week of cutting consumption, and rethinking a disposable way of life. Each day of the week, participants will attempt to reduce their impact on the environment with steps such as taking public transportation, reviewing what goes into the trash, not buying any new items, powering down unused items and giving back to their community. “Each day builds on the next,” said Illinois Wesleyan’s Visiting Associate Professor of Environmental Studies and Health Laurine Brown, “so that ideally, by week’s end, participants have stopped consuming new goods and making trash, switched to a non-polluting transportation, and all while discovering hidden lessons about what is important in your life.” For more information, call Wellness at (309) 556-3334.

Contact: Rachel Hatch, (309) 556-3960