Tag Archive for climate change

Morning Links: Biking to fight climate change crisis, how to bike Spring Street, and a musical view of CicLAvia

A new report warns that the Earth only has another eleven years to reverse climate change before suffering irreversible and catastrophic damage.

Not surprisingly, bicycling and walking more were among the mitigating tactics the researchers recommended to help fight climate change and keep the planet habitable.

Then again, that news is nothing new.

Although it may come as a shock to some members of the LA city council, where self-proclaimed environmentalists continue to block bike lanes and keep Angelenos dependent on their cars, despite acknowledging a climate emergency.

Maybe now they’ll finally get the message. And actually do something about it.

Though something tells me we may all turn blue from waiting.

Unless we die first from the effects of all those cars idling in traffic.

Meanwhile, Elon Musk’s takeaway from that climate change report is that we need to all switch to solar powered e-cars.

It’s almost like he has a stake in it or something.

Thanks to Jason Islas for the Musk heads-up.

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LADOT has advice for bike riders on how to use the new left hand, parking protected bike lanes on Spring Street in DTLA.

Now if they could just come up with advice for drivers on how to avoid parking in it.

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LA County serves up a great video recap weaving a musical tapestry from last month’s Celebrate LA! CicLAvia.

Thanks to LA County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas for the link.

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Bike Snob’s Eben Weiss continues his ascent to being one of the country’s leading bike advocates, this time taking on the self-described “avid cyclists” who stand in the way of bike safety.

Sort of like the Kiwi driver and self-described cyclist who got upset when he had to follow two chatting bike riders, calling them entitled, rude and careless for delaying him for a whole 21 seconds.

Meanwhile, a bike advocate respond to his video by saying “Revving your engine, overtaking on a blind corner, and yelling at people on bikes is a dick move.”

Something tells me Weiss would agree.

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Anyone have more information about this crash near Santa Monica Airport? That totally trashed bicycle doesn’t look good.

However, there’s nothing in the news about it. And usually, no news is good news.

Update: I saw the following email from Benjamin S after I posted this last night. 

Meanwhile, a comment below says it took police 12 hours to clear the crash scene, and that forensics was called to investigate, which is never a good sign. 

Let’s all take a moment to offer a prayer or good thoughts for the victim of this crash, and hope for the best.

Update 2: According to Santa Monica City Manager Rick Cole, the victim was “severely, but not critically injured.” 

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Pro cyclist Ted King was on the receiving end of a punishment pass from a road raging driver.

Twitter user RS recognizes the location as Petaluma Road in Point Reyes.

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Nothing like endangering a kid in a baby carriage with an ill-advised pass.

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Today’s common theme is ebikes.

Lifehacker considers whether you should buy an ebike. Unfortunately, the first — and often, last — consideration for many people is whether they can actually afford it.

The New York Times questions whether ebikes are about to take over the city, now that Gotham has eased restrictions on ped-assist bikes.

Business Times argues that ebikes can make you fitter than a regular bike. Which is probably true if the regular bike stays in your garage.

And Wired examines how dockless bikeshare provider Jump designed a global ebike capable of serving the most people, in the most urban environments.

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Local

A ghost bike will be placed tonight for the victim of Sunday’s bike crash in Sun Valley.

 

State

The Challenged Athlete’s Foundation is hosting a 600-mile Million Dollar Challenge ride down the left coast from Monterey to San Diego next week.

The Orange County Bike Bells program to distribute bike bells to mountain bikers was honored with a Savvy Award for the best use of a promotional item from the national City-County Communications & Marketing Association (3CMA).

A separated Class 1 bike path in Goleta has won the Bikeways and Trails Project of the Year Award from the Los Angeles chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers.

Now this Oakland bikeway is what a protected bike lane — and a Complete Street — should look like.

Former pro Levi Leipheimer’s Levi’s GranFondo drew over 4,000 bicyclists to Sonoma County over the weekend.

Sacramento approved a change to the city’s food vending vehicles code to legalize food bikes, at the urging of a couple who found out their fresh Stroopwafel bike violated the city codes.

 

National

The author of the “safety in numbers” theory says that tiny vehicles, such as e-scooters, could be the best thing to happen to Vision Zero.

Bike Index talks with the owner of the 5,000th stolen bicycle recovered through the free bike registry.

Bicycling profiles what they call cycling’s cutest rider, a three-pound Schnoodle named Pippa.

It’s neighbor against neighbor on the streets of Denver, where residents are split on a series of mini traffic circles installed as part of a neighborhood bikeway giving priority to non-motorized users.

Cycling tackles one of Colorado’s most iconic passes.

A Colorado bike tour has left a trail of bounced checks and broken promises in its wake, including stiffing a high school marching band.

If drivers can’t even manage to avoid dooring the new Milwaukee street car, how the hell are they supposed to see us?

In a problem DTLA bike riders can relate to, a Chicago TV station reports that bike riders are being endangered by having to swerve around cars and buses parked in a bike lane.

Maine is trying to boost bike tourism by plotting a 320-mile extension to US Bike Route 1 through the northern part of the state.

New York is building a 750-mile escape route, uh, bike trail to Canada.

WaPo discovers ‘bents, saying today’s adult tricycles are low, sleek, speeding and growing in popularity.

 

International

In Vancouver, dooring isn’t considered a crash, because the car isn’t moving and bikes aren’t considered vehicles. And the fine is just $81.

Life is cheap in Manitoba, Canada, where an allegedly drunk hit-and-run driver got just two years for killing a bike riding father; he also lost his license for five years, but the court cut that in half to credit him with the time since the 2016 crash.

A candidate for the Windsor, Ontario city council is taking Bike the Vote seriously by doing his campaigning by bicycle.

A “radical” new proposal would pedestrianize half of the streets in London’s historic core, banning cars and trucks while lowering speed limits to just 15 mph.

A reporter follows BBC presenter Jeremy Vines as he rides his bike from his TV gig to his radio studio, and quotes Vines saying riding a bike is quicker than a Maserati in London.

Safety first. A British bike rider dressed all in black, including a balaclava, to murder a man in a bike-by shooting — but wore a hi-viz jacket over it. One paper suggests it could be an effort to hide in plain sight.

No surprise here. A new study from a British insurance company shows that bike riders make better drivers; bike riding drivers filed claims at less than half the rate of other motorists.

A UK city is posting “Share with Care” signs to remind bike riders and pedestrians to safely share formerly pedestrian streets that were recently opened to people on bicycles.

Police in a British city are stopping bicyclists for using a cellphone when they ride. Only problem is, that’s not illegal.

A Scottish woman is on track to shatter the record for the fastest women’s ride around the world.

Bicycling is booming in Russia, despite market conditions that limit the importation of better quality bikes.

International diplomats climb on their bikes to fight climate change in Islamabad, Pakistan.

Foreign workers in Dubai can’t get to their jobs after their bicycles were confiscated for violating the emirate’s law mandating bike helmets and hi-viz.

Kiwi bike riders say they’re sick of the anti-cyclist vitriol on social media.

The Korea Times takes a look back at the country’s first women bike riders, even though many of the first women’s bikes were ridden by men wearing traditional skirts.

Tragic news from Japan, where an 88-year old woman is in a coma after being knocked down by a 13-year old boy on a bike.

 

Competitive Cycling

An admittedly flawed Irish study shows a worrying increase in spinal injuries among competitive cyclists.

A writer for Outside says America’s most recent ex-Tour de France winner is seeking forgiveness by starting a new cycling team.

A new Chinese cycling team with a massive budget sets out to win the Tour de France by 2025.

 

Finally…

A cuter, fluffier way to sniff out dope cheats. Why change tires when you can just zip on a new tread?

And apparently, there’s nothing scarier than bike-riding teenagers in clown masks.

 

Morning Links: Bikeways the best way to fight climate change, and buy a steel bike to cut CO2 emissions

Want to fight climate change?

Build more and better bikeways.

According to a new British study, the single most cost-effective way to reduce the CO2 emissions causing climate change is to build more bicycle infrastructure.

In fact, if bicycling rose to just 7.5% of urban bike trips globally, it would keep 2.3 gigatons of CO2 emissions out of the atmosphere.

Increase bike modal share to 10%, and that rises to a savings of 11 gigatons of CO2.

And the cost of all that new climate change fighting infrastructure?

Just over $2 billion worldwide. Minus $2 billion, that is.

Which means that bike infrastructure more than pays for itself.

Tell that to the traffic safety deniers. And to LA city councilmembers like Paul Koretz, who profess to fighting climate change while blocking bike lanes in their districts.

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Another way to cut carbon emissions is to buy a steel frame bike, instead of ti, carbon or aluminum. And patch your tubes instead of throwing them away.

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My former Iditarod Sled Dog-driving brother Eric is off on another unsupported solo bike tour.

This time he’s following a route that will take him 2,400 miles from Portland Oregon to Grand Junction, Colorado, hitting five national parks along the way.

And likely riding through some serious winter weather before he makes it home late next month.

Then again, after mushing through the wilderness on the way to Nome in the middle of winter, he should be used to it.

And yes, I’m jealous as hell.

I’ll try to provide updates along the way.

Eric’s bike loaded down with his kitty litter panniers as he sets out on the first day.

Not a bad view for the first night of the tour, as he settles in for the night at Tillamook Bay.

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Local

CiclaValley catches a driver continually weaving in and out of a bike lane to bypass backed up traffic.

 

State

Bad news from Escondido, where a 14-year old boy suffered life-threatening burns when he was hit by a driver while riding his bike, and was trapped underneath the car; police were quick to blame the victim for not having lights on his bike or wearing “safety gear.” Bike riders in California are required to have lights and reflectors after dark, and riders under 18 must wear helmets — even though that would have done nothing to prevent the victim’s burns in this case.

Police in San Luis Obispo are stopping bicyclists and pedestrians for traffic violations, and asking them to post to social media why they were stopped in lieu of receiving a ticket. Although it would be nice if they did the same for drivers, instead of just blaming and shaming potential victims.

 

National

City Lab offers an explainer on how induced demand works. Someone tried to argue last week that induced demand was a myth, based solely on the fact that he chose not to believe it.

Writing for a tech website, an “avid cyclist” calls e-scooters one of the season’s most ridiculous and unnecessary fads, and hopes they die before they kill someone. He seems to see the streets from a windshield perspective, despite having spent a “not-so-small fortune” on bicycles, kits, helmets and gloves.

Life is cheap in Arizona, where a driver was acquitted of murder charges for fatally shooting drunken bike rider following a fight that began because the victim was weaving in and out of traffic.

Heavy rains have forced Madison WI bike riders to find alternative routes, as bike paths in the bike-friendly city have been taken over by ducks and kayaks.

Chicago Streetsblog says buffered bike lanes offer an inexpensive way to prevent doorings.

A Columbus, Ohio writer says the current panic over scooters is nothing new; the arrival of bicycles sparked the same fears over 120 years ago.

A beginning Ohio bike commuter offers advice based on what’s he’s learned.

Four hundred fifty bicyclists are making their way 325 miles across the state of Maine in the sixth annual BikeMaine tour.

An Op-Ed from a Boston bike rider describes the day he was assaulted by a road raging driver while riding in a bike lane — which wouldn’t have happened if the city had built the protected bike lane bicyclists had asked for

A real estate website has identified New York’s most blocked bike lane. LA’s would probably be the new MyFig bike lane across from Staples Center, with nearby 7th Street a close second. But that’s just a guess.

The New York Post’s bike-hating columnist gets exactly what he was after when his latest screed stirs up an angry response, concluding that the people who called him racist for ignoring anyone other than young, white bicyclists are the real racists. Sure, let’s go with that. Nothing like tossing a molotov cocktail into a crowd, then acting innocent when people get upset.

An Op-Ed in the Baltimore Sun says it’s time to stop caving into the bike lobby, citing the $850 million in federal TAP funds, and the paltry $3 million spent by the Bike League and People for Bikes to lobby the federal government. Even though TAP funds go for a lot more than just bike lanes. And wait until he finds out how much the feds, states and local governments spend to subsidize motor vehicle traffic. Let alone how much car makers, oil companies and construction firms pay to lobby them.

A Virginia letter writer says expecting bike riders to give a verbal warning is outdated, and they should be required to use a bike bell, instead.

 

International

Bike Radar discusses the “essential pieces of cycling clothing and kit you need” to ride a bike. I can’t begin to say how much I hate stories like this; all you need to ride a bike is pants or shorts, and some sort of shoes. Everything else is optional to a greater or lesser degree.

A Toronto physician’s group calling itself Doctors for Safe Cycling says lowering speed limits and building more protected bike lanes is the prescription for road safety.

Now that’s something to be proud of. A 20-year old British woman became the first blind rider to independently ride a 30-mile trail.

The Guardian says Great Britain needs a boost from ebikes.

An English driver will spend nearly four years behind bars after smashing into a group of randonneurs a year ago, leaving one rider paralyzed and two others injured — then simply driving home despite acknowledging he’d hit “something.

Do we really want to get into the great bike helmet debate again? Not when it’s as lightweight as this piece from the UK.

Even in the Netherlands, school drop-off points are dangerous places, as a government minister urges parents not to drive, and to walk or bike their kids to school instead.

A century old Kiev, Ukraine velodrome might be the coolest cycling track in Europe.

You’ve got to be kidding. An Australian city puts a series of bike safety signs on hold over fears they could increase liability by acknowledging the streets are dangerous. So apparently, the solution is just to keep them that way.

 

Competitive Cycling

Heartbreaking news, as 27-year old German Olympic and world track sprint cycling champion Kristina Vogel announced her legs are paralyzed, following a crash with another cyclist while training earlier this year that resulted in a severed spinal chord. Yet another reminder that bicycling is a dangerous sport, especially at the highest levels.

Ending a 17-year drought, 22-year old Kate Courtney became the first American since 2001 to win the mountain bike world championship; Denmark’s Annika Langvad finished second, followed by Canadian Emily Batty.

The leader’s jersey change hands once again at the Vuelta a España, where the top four riders are separated by just 47 seconds.

Twenty-three-year old American former mountain biker Sepp Kuss is making an impact at the Vuelta in his first year on the WorldTour, after winning this year’s Tour of Utah.

We probably don’t need to worry about spoilers with the Tour of Britain, where France’s Julian Alaphilippe won the title.

The Dimension Data pro cycling team will reduce the number of African riders as it struggles to maintain its WorldTour status; the team has focused on developing black African riders.

Sad news from Canada, where a 20-year old Edmonton track cyclist is in intensive care after crashing at around 40 mph in a Mexican velodrome.

 

Finally…

Most people usually don’t drink while they’re on their bike. It’s not a tandem bike, it’s an argument machine.

And once again, an Aussie rider is the victim of a rude ‘roo. Or two.

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Join the Militant Angeleno and BikinginLA for the first-ever Militant Angeleno’s Epic CicLAvia Tour at the Celebrate LA! LA Phil 100 CicLAvia on September 30th!

Just RSVP to [email protected] We want to guarantee a relatively small group to make sure we can keep the group together, and everyone can hear.

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L’Shana Tova to all marking Rosh Hashanah today!

Morning Links: Koretz calls for climate change mobilization but still no bike lanes, and Bikes4Orphans BBQ ride

No hypocrisy here.

Bike lane-blocking LA City Councilmember Paul Koretz joined with author Naomi Klein to call for a World War II style mobilization to fight climate change.

Los Angeles took on the needs of the entire United States and much of the world during World War II by embracing wartime mobilization. Its existing population and hundreds of thousands of new residents not only contributed massively to aircraft and ship manufacturing, they also volunteered to aid the Red Cross by the tens of thousands. I’m calling on all Angelenos to mobilize once again.  We need a World War II-scale mobilization in order to keep our City safe and our planet habitable and resilient. And we need to ensure that we do it in a way that honors frontline communities, ensures equity, and protects workers.  I’m asking the creative minds of Los Angeles to join with the grassroots activists in creating the City of the future, not some fictional Tomorrowland, but here, on the ground, in the City of Angels we all love.

Of course, one of the single best steps LA could take to fight climate change would be to get people out of their cars, and onto non-polluting sources of transportation.

Like bicycles, for instance.

But that would mean building the kind of on-street bikeways on arterial streets that Koretz has actively opposed since being elected to the LA City Council, after being termed out of the state legislature.

Let alone calling for an outright bike ban on the boulevard.

So we can only assume that Koretz has had a change of heart, and will now approve the shovel-ready bike lanes on Westwood Blvd and other Westside streets.

Or maybe he’s not serious about that WWII-style mobilization — or fighting climate change — after all.

Thanks to David Wolfburg for the heads-up.

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Bikes4Orphans will hold a fundraising BBQ ride on August 20th; the Pasadena-based non-profit sends bicycles to children around the world to help them stay in school.

 

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VeloNews looks at how the leader in the Tour de France gets a yellow bike to match his yellow jersey. Or not.

Britain’s Chris Froome is the overwhelming favorite to win this year’s Tour, which starts on Saturday in Dusseldorf.

A rider on Alberto Contador’s Trek-Segafredo team has been replaced for the Tour after testing positive for EPO. It’s refreshing to still see old school blood doping in this modern age of motor and poop doping.

Bicycling offers tips on how to watch the Tour de France without cable TV. The magazine also talks with newly crowned national champ Amber Neben about how she reclaimed the title at 42 years old.

Iowa’s Sarah Cooper talks with a local TV station following her RAAM victory.

A lawsuit against British Cycling seeks to have the country’s Olympic athletes declared employees before a claim of discrimination can be heard; they aren’t currently considered employees, despite signing a contract and receiving a monthly salary.

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Local

The innocent victim killed in a drive-by shooting as he rode his bike past people arguing after a traffic collision in South LA has been identified as a 17-year old Los Angeles man; a GoFundMe page set up to pay his funeral expenses has raised less than $1,000 of the $10,000 goal.

Streetsblog’s Joe Linton points out the irony that the anti-safety group looking to reverse the lane reductions in Playa del Rey is stealing the Open Streets name from the popular carfree ciclovías spreading across the US. Also note in the comments that the changes to Vista del Mar have proven as unpopular with some cyclists as they have with drivers.

Los Angeles pledges $1 million to improve safety on the LA River bike path.

You know there’s something positive going on when a reporter for the San Gabriel Valley Tribune can ride his bike to a music festival next to the Rose Bowl.

The Metro Bike bikeshare will come to Culver City next year, with 600 bikes at stations throughout the city, as well as in Palms, Mar Vista, Del Rey and Playa Vista. However, the bikes will be incompatible with the bikeshare in neighboring Beverly Hills.

You can beat the traffic to Santa Monica’s free Twilight Concerts on the pier with a free bike valet or the city’s Breeze bikeshare. However, that’s “or”, not “and,” since the bike valet does not accept the bikeshare bikes.

 

State

A San Diego cyclist and former sheriff’s sergeant is fighting a severe form of brain cancer; a fund to help defray medical expenses has raised just under $35,000.

It might be the most dangerous intersection on San Diego’s El Cajon Blvd, but apparently, it’s not dangerous enough to fix.

Ford has pulled a controversial 24-hour pass for its new Bay Area bikeshare over fears it would destroy the local bike rental industry. However, they were beaten to the punch by a new dockless — and unpermitted — bikeshare that dropped 100 ebikes on the streets of San Francisco.

San Francisco Streetsblog questions why more isn’t done to protect bike riders during construction projects. Here in LA, riders are usually just thrown to the wolves during construction.

Caught on video: A San Francisco bicyclist documents the difficulty riding through the homeless camps that have taken over a popular bikeway.

 

National

America’s only remaining Tour de France winner has won again, getting a temporary restraining order against a pair of professional cybersquatters.

A Minneapolis paper looks at the 200-year history of the bicycle, noting it’s gone from being considered risky to healthy.

Detroit continues to be in the news, as a bike shop is closed until next week after an incident in which a black customer berated a black mechanic at the store using derogatory racial terms, then claimed on Facebook that he’d been jumped by the employees when they ask him to leave.

An 11-year old Ohio boy is rewarded with a new bicycle and helmet after using his own money to help pay for his great-grandmother’s funeral.

A Brooklyn man could face more serious charges for sucker punching a man as he rode past on his bicycle; his victim is still in a coma three weeks later.

Baltimore bike advocates reach a settlement with the city to keep a protected bike lane in place, after filing suit when the mayor threatened to rip it out.

 

International

A Toronto columnist says it’s crazy to suggest that lower speed limits could make the city’s streets more dangerous by increasing driver frustration and aggression. Although taking away a traffic lane certainly seems to push them over the edge.

A new play about the death of a London woman on her bike is crowdfunding money to stage a premier this fall.

A change in British law to give priority — aka right-of-way — to people going straight over people turning at intersections could improve safety for bike riders and pedestrians, while reducing delays up to 38%. That’s also the law here, though it’s often ignored.

 

Finally…

How can it be a bicycle café if there aren’t any bicycles? It’s stretching it to call something that can do 60 mph an ebike — even if they make you promise not to go that fast on the street.

And no, don’t grab a tow from a backhoe.

 

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