Friday, June 1, 2012

Las Positas College Bike to Work Day!

Now that summer weather has returned, many BCC team members have begun commuting again by bicycle! 

Participating in May's Bike to Work Day was a group of dedicated cyclists affiliated with Las Positas College.  Kudos to event co-chairs Professor Mike Ansell and LPC President Kevin Walthers (pictured below with other staff and community members). Thanks, as well, to Livermore Cyclery for their support of our trip from downtown Livermore to the college!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Here comes winter!

As is our tradition, Be the Change Cyclists do not need to report their mileage from November through March due to winter conditions. Everyone is encouraged to keep commuting by bike, but we'll suspend reporting during these cold months.

Thanks for making a difference and for being the change you want to see in the world!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Keep riding those miles!

Yes it's summer and that means prime time to commute by bicycle!

Thanks to all you "Be the Change" team members who have been riding and sending in your miles. It's amazing how the miles add up!

If you're visiting this blog for the first time and wish to join our team, click on the link to the right for information. We love adding new members!

Jim Ott

Friday, April 1, 2011

Spring has sprung!

March 20 marked the first day of spring, so it’s time to renew our commitment to commuting to work and running errands via bicycle whenever we can.

Several dedicated cyclists continued to ride in January and February and reported in their miles, adding 146 trips and 1,393 miles to our grand total, which now stands at 3,667 trips and 28,505 miles since we started the club in April 2009.

I’ve started getting emails from BCC team members who started riding again in March. If you commuted by bike in March, please email me with your trips.

Otherwise, since it’s now April, let’s all recommit and get back on our bikes to be the change we want to see in the world. Email me each Friday (or at month-end if you prefer) so I can continue to quantify the difference we are making.

If you are visiting this blog for the first time and wish to join our team, click on the link to the right for information.  We love adding new members!

Jim Ott

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

How did we do in 2010?

We did a great job in 2010, commuting 18,153 miles by bike and saving 2,021 car trips. Our average commute is now just under 9 miles per trip, and our team stands at 52 members.

The 2010 totals compare favorably to 2009, when we commuted 8,093 miles and made 1,443 trips. Total members in December 2009 were 34, so it's expected our miles would be less. However, we averaged 231 miles per member in 2009 and 349 miles per member in 2010. This is largely because our newer members have longer bike commutes.

So who commuted the MOST miles in 2010?
Now, now. Being the change we want to see in the world isn't about individual victories, but about TEAM, so does it really matter who commuted the most miles? Yes, it does!  Congrats to Alma Schiefer! Since joining BCC in March 2010, Alma has commuted a whopping 2,744 miles by bicycle and saved 71 car trips! She is our highest contributing team member!  You'd think with all those miles we could get a photo of her commuting. But alas, no such photos exist, so we'll have to be content with images of Alma on a non-commute ride up Mt. Diablo.

Go Alma!

Special mention for contributing a combined 4,567 commute miles in 2010 goes to Mike Rushford, Ursula Goldstein, Rob Barnett and Dave Hipple. And special thanks to Carlos Hung for continuing to cycle during these coldest months and even in the rain and reporting in every Friday morning!  

Congratulations to team member Don Johnston!
Don has been appointed to serve on Pleasanton’s Bicycle Pedestrian Advisory Committee. Working for Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Don saves between 10-12 car miles per month by cycling.

Don sent in the following editorial, published in the New York Times on December 16. It's a good reminder to obey the traffic laws to encourage cooperation between motorists and cyclists (Thanks Don!): 

There Oughta Be a Law. Well, There Is.

Let’s be clear. We like bicycles. They are good for our air, good for our health, and, perhaps even someday, good for our traffic problems. New York City has about 483 miles of bike paths, some going back to the 1800s, and is adding 50 miles of bike lanes a year. City officials have recently been handing out data showing that these lanes “calm” traffic and cut down on fatalities.

But a lot of people are not particularly calm about bicyclists, and we are deeply sympathetic. Too many cyclists must think that they don’t have to follow traffic rules. That red light? Zip on through. That one-way street? No problem. Cyclists like to call it “salmoning.” If the city is serious about encouraging biking (and, by the way, less than a percent of commuters in New York currently ride bikes), then the New York Police Department and bike riders have to crack down on these cyclists and make them obey traffic laws like everybody else.

That there are actually rules may come as news to some cyclists. The city’s Department of Transportation has a summary on its Web site. For example, only pre-teenage children are supposed to have bikes on the sidewalk. Cyclists “must have hand on steering device or handlebars.” Also, “Rider cannot wear more than one earphone attached to radio, tape player or other audio device while riding.” Cyclists often complain that the problem is not the bicycles but the cars. It is true that cars and trucks can too easily maim and kill cyclists. But cyclists can too easily injure pedestrians — and themselves.

The Manhattan borough president, Scott Stringer, listening to complaints from cyclists and other New Yorkers, did a quick snapshot of several locations and found what he called chaos. Over a 22-hour period, his staff members clocked: 741 instances of pedestrians blocking bike lanes; more than 275 vehicles blocking bike lanes, including a school bus and pedicabs; 331 cyclists going the wrong way; 237 cyclists running red lights; and 42 cyclists riding on sidewalks.

Janette Sadik-Khan, the city’s transportation commissioner, has promised a new education campaign to help riders and drivers and pedestrians get along. The police department also needs to give more tickets to cyclists who break the law. It’s not easy — imagine catching a cyclist going through a red light — but a few more $100-plus tickets, plus an order to read the rules, would certainly calm traffic in New York City.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Holiday Updates from BCC

The latest news headlines from BCC:

It's that time of year...

...when during the winter, BCC goes into a bit suspended animation (since some of us hang our commuter bikes in the garage!) Like last year, BCC does not expect you to report commute miles from December through February because of the cold weather and low bike commute miles. For dedicated team members who like to report in every Friday anyway, these miles will be added to our annual totals. But there is no obligation to report in again until March.

See our grand totals below.

. . . . .

Members in the news:

Be the Change Cyclists congratulates Jim Van Dyke for being elected to the board for the East Bay Bicycle Coalition!  Thanks to Jim for his advocacy and promoting bicycle riding as everyday transportation.  Be sure to join as a member of the East Bay Bicycle Coalition at

. . . . .

Send in your picture! We want to see your smiling face, so send in your photo to

Thanks to team member Carlos Hung for sending in this photo! 

. . . . .

We're making a big difference!

Since inception of our online bike commute club in April 2009, we have saved 3,314 car trips and commuted 25,004 miles.  This is a powerful statement about what a difference we can make when we leave the car in the garage.  

Finally, Happy Holidays from BCC. May you get lots of great bike accessories for Christmas!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Survey finds more people opting to commute by bicycle

BCC team member Mike Rushford has sent in an article near and dear to our hearts.

Seems the League of American Bicyclists found that regular bike commuting in the 70 largest U.S. cities increased 35 percent between 2005 and 2009.
  • Kansas City saw the biggest increase, climbing an astonishing 1,095 percent.
  • Indianapolis followed with a jump of 392 percent.
  • New Orleans rounded out the top three with an increase of 155 percent.

These numbers don't include cyclists who bike once or twice a week.  So imagine how many more trips by bike have occurred since 2005 thanks to people like us who make the effort to commute by bike when possible.

Here's a sentence from the article that will remind you of us: "Any way you look at it, bike commuting is growing more popular due in part to grassroots activism and a growing commitment from cities to embrace cycling as a viable means of getting around."

For the full article, here's the link: