Ride the Bike, Drive the Change!

woman cycling to reduce carbon footprintHaving sorted myself out with an electric bike I was excited to hear from Stefania from Challenge16.com.

She told me about their global biking challenge which aims to make people and the planet healthier by challenging everybody to use their bike instead of cars. For every 16 participants who sign up and take part, one new tree will be planted.

Challenge16 have partnered with the Danish NGO Plant A Tree to launch this free campaign and the long term goal is also to put pressure on the politicians to sign an ambitious agreement at COP16 in Mexico this year.

Challenge16 follows one of my own philosophies in life which is that if we all join in, we can collectively make a difference!

All you have to do is use your bike and register how many kilometres you travel. In return, they will plant new trees – it’s a win win!

According to their site, if just 16 people biked 8 km every day, for 5 days, 86.4 kg of CO2 would be saved. This represents a car trip from Paris to Zurich!

Challenge16 lasts from March 16th to November 16th. The more people who take part with the challenge, the greater pressure we will be able to put on politicians at the upcoming COP16 climate conference in Mexico.

You can track the total number of kilometres biked by participants on their home page, read their blog to interact with others, upload photos and find helpful information about the environment. You can also keep up with their latest news on the Challange16 facebook page or via twitter.

“We wanted to make a simple campaign with great effect. Most people have a bike, and if you jump on your bike instead of getting behind the wheel in your everyday movements, you can actually save some CO2. At the same time, we plant new trees, and trees absorb CO2. It is an equation with a pretty good result” says Bjørn Døssing, Information Manager at Plant a Tree, Denmark.

“It is definitely our ambition that Challenge16 spreads across the world” continues Bjørn Døssing. “We are convinced that there is great commitment all over the world to make an effort to fight climate changes. But we have to ensure that the challenge asked is a practicable one. Even small changes, like using the bike instead of the car and planting new trees have a positive impact on both climate and body. We really hope this initiative will spread in ever-widening circles.”

What about you? if you cycle anyway, why not record your daily kilometres via Challenge16 and be part of the change!