Monday, September 10, 2012

The Conservice Summer of Biking Recap

The badge of accomplishment for the summer bikers.
by Hayley Anderson

Logan, Utah is a relatively commuter-friendly town. Traffic isn’t too crazy and many roads have plenty of room for bikers. The location of Conservice, which has its headquarters in Logan, is ideal for bikers – it’s in the center of the valley, near the neighboring town of Providence, and easily accessible via multiple bike-friendly roads. The Conservation Team wondered what they could do to encourage more employees to take advantage of biking opportunities. After all, biking is much less expensive than driving, it’s great for the environment, and there are health benefits associated with biking.

In May, the team brainstormed ideas. Realizing everyone likes a little friendly competition, they issued a challenge. Bikers would track their commuter miles each day, with the goal of reaching 5,000 miles by the end of the summer.  Could they do it?

Although some employees were already biking to work on a regular basis, many took the challenge as an opportunity to try it out and give their cars a rest. One employee started biking because he “loved the downhill commute to work on the cool summer mornings.” Though the warmer, uphill ride back home was a challenge, he was still happy Conservice issued the challenge and promoted healthy living.

To keep up the motivation, the Consevation Team not only rewarded team members who had biked the most miles, but they also recognized and rewarded those who may have lived closer to Conservice and therefore logged fewer miles, but were most consistent in their biking efforts. Company-wide recognition, free ice cream, and a general feeling of personal and team accomplishment were the prizes, but would that be motivation enough to meet the 5,000 mile goal?

Well, August 31 came and went, and it was time to tally the numbers. Did the team meet their summer challenge? Yes. In fact, 5,571 miles later, the team exceeded their goal.

What does 5,571 miles represent? The Conservation Team did some math, and 5,571 miles biked instead of driven saved 5,103 pounds of carbon emissions that would have been expended by an average car. The average cost per mile for a car is $0.25, so the team saved $1392 by biking. The benefits of biking also reach our health – burning on average about 40 calories per mile. As a team, the bikers burned 222,840 calories over the course of the summer, which equals 63.67 pounds.

While biking is expected to continue through the fall, we look forward to the next challenge issued by the Conservation Team.

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