Happy Earth Day! Regional councils across the country are celebrating today by spreading information on environmental issues and earth-friendly activities.
One of the activities that councils are promoting today is bicycle commuting. National Bike to Work Day will be held May 17th, and many councils have biking events planned either on the 17th or another date in May and June.
As both transportation and environmental planners can tell you, transportation leaves a significant environmental footprint. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 29% of greenhouse gas emissions originate from the transportation sector.
Each commuter who chooses to bike to work and keep a car off the road lowers emissions. Each individual trip adds up, and studies indicate that even a moderate increase in biking trips can create a significant regional impact.
Check out the events below to see how regional councils are planning and supporting regional Bike to Work and Bike Month initiatives.
Hosting your own Bike to Work event? Send your stories to firstname.lastname@example.org or use the hashtag #RegionsLead on social media!
Regional Bike to Work Events:
Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (MWCOG)
On May 17, MWCOG’s Commuter Connections program is partnering with the Washington Area Bicyclist Association for their annual bike to work event. The first 20,000 Bike to Work registrants will receive an event T-shirt that they can pick up at one of the 115 pit stops that will be set up throughout the greater DC area. The pit stops will offer refreshments and a raffle for a new bike. More information can be found on the event site.
Denver Regional Council of Governments (DRCOG)
Colorado’s weather can be unpredictable in May, so the State of Colorado declared the fourth Wednesday of June as Bike to Work Day (June 26). DRCOG’s Way to Go program convenes city and county governments and local organizations to plan the event, which aims to educate commuters on the benefits of biking. The event features pit stops, food, group rides, apparel, and awesome posters.
Houston-Galveston Area Council (H-GAC)
HGAC holds a Bike to Work event on May 16, and also celebrates the entire month of May as Bike Month. As commuting only makes up a portion of all trips, H-GAC also uses Bike Month to encourage other biking trips to go to schools, libraries, and restaurants; and to visit friends and family.
North Central Texas Council of Government (NCTCOG)
NCTCOG also celebrates Bike Month. This includes a Bike to Work Day on May 17 and multiple local Bike to Work and Bike with the Mayor events. NCTCOG also uses Bike Month to encourage use of TryParkingIt.com, their ride-match and trip-logging program, which helps commuters in the region match up with transit, biking, and walking buddies.