One week from tomorrow, the eleven riders that make up Team NRDC will embark on Climate Ride, a 320-mile bicycle journey that starts near Eureka and makes its way down the North Coast to San Francisco. This 5-day adventure benefits organizations that work on clean energy, sustainability, climate change, and bicycle advocacy, and for the second year in a row, NRDC is a beneficiary of Climate Ride, which has donated over $850,000 to environmental organizations. Having rallied friends, family and coworkers, as of today, Team NRDC has exceeded our fundraising goal of $30,000, and is currently the overall leader in fundraising for this ride, which mirrors so many of NRDC’s goals.
Sustainable forms of transportation are a centerpiece of California’s efforts to implement SB 375, the Sustainable Communities and Climate Protection Act of 2008. Regions like Southern California, long known for sprawl, traffic, and pollution, have unveiled visionary plans aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and vehicle miles travelled (VMT), while fostering the development of healthier communities that facilitate the use of public transit, walking, and biking. In fact, the plan Southern California adopted in April of this year nearly quadruples the amount of funding in the plan for bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure, from $1.8 billion in the last plan to nearly $7 billion this time around. This is in response to the overwhelming support expressed by Council members, bicycle advocates, and public health officials, as well as strong support in a region wide poll conducted in October of last year.
Comprised of close to 200 riders, Climate Ride’s trek down the California coast by bicycle represents a form of transportation that is healthy, sustainable, and will continue to grow in importance as California’s communities plan for a future where car dependence and traffic congestion are no longer the norm. We are deeply grateful to the outstanding and visionary staff of the Climate Ride, and salute all the riders who have worked so hard to raise funds and train for this incredible event. To learn more about the ride or support Team NRDC, please visit our team website.