Thursday, March 29, 2012

CofC Sustainability Week

Next week College of Charleston's Sustainability Department will hold its first Sustainability Week.  Here is a poster for events, and below I have copied full details.  All events are open to the public.  Check out the Rickshaw Race!  It is sure to be a good time!

Transportation Expo
The Office of Sustainability is excited to host the campus's inaugural Sustainability Week from 4/2-4/5.  On April 2nd, the College of Charleston's Office of Sustainability will sponsor a Transportation Expo as the kick-off event to the college's sustainability week events. The Transportation Expo will promote the benefits of transportation modes outside of single-occupancy vehicles from 12pm - 3pm on River's Green behind Addlestone Library. Highlighting the event will be a chariot race around River's Green that will pit competing bike companies against one another for the coveted Loose Bolt Prize, followed by a bicycle workshop for students to learn the ends and outs of basic bicycle maintenance. Leading local organizations such as Charleston Moves, CARTA, and the Department of Transportation within the Berkley-Charleston-Dorchester Council of Governments will be on hand to engage students in opportunities on and around campus to decrease their carbon footprint, save money, and shift how they view mobility. Along with CofC students, these organizations will help unveil the new Bike Share and Ride Share programs.  For more information please visit or email
Local Organization Fair
The Office of Sustainability is excited to host the campus's inaugural Sustainability Week from 4/2-4/5.  Sustainability Week will feature a Local Organization Fair at the Cistern Yard on Tuesday 4/3 from 12pm-3:00pm.  This Fair features more than twenty local organizations including Charleston Parks Conservatory, Water Missions International, SurfRider, Pet Helpers, Local Lowcountry First, Grow Food Carolina, Keep Charleston Beautiful, Charleston Moves, and many more.  The Fair is hosted by a collaboration of undergraduate student groups including Green CofC, Alliance for Planet Earth, Urban Agriculture, and CofC Clean Eats.  Stop by and learn more about the many organizations in the Charleston community!  For more information please visit or email
Between the Harvest Showing and Panel Discussion
The Office of Sustainability is excited to host the campus's inaugural Sustainability Week from 4/2-4/5.  Tuesday 4/3 in the first floor auditorium of the School of Science and Mathematics Building (SSMB129) from 5:00pm-6:30pm features a documentary showing and panel discussion of "Between the Harvest", the story of Ostional, a remote coastal community in Costa Rica that relies on a legal harvest of sea turtle eggs for income.   This short documentary is objectively told through the eyes of the local people and delves into the controversy of natural resource use, conservation, and sustainability.  This screening of “Between the Harvest” will be followed with a panel discussion on current social and environmental themes revealed throughout the film. The panel includes Scott Drucker, Director, “Between the Harvest", Carlos Mario Orrego Vasquez, Lead Biologist, IUCN Representative, Director of Ostional Wildlife Refuge Megan Westmeyer, Sustainable Seafood Initiative Coordinator, South Carolina Aquarium and Annette Watson, Ph.D. Political Science, Assistant Professor, College of Charleston.  A Q&A session will also be held with these distinguished speakers.  This event is hosted by MESSA, MBGSA, and PCMI.  For more information please visit or
APE Trash Audit
The Office of Sustainability is excited to host the campus's inaugural Sustainability Week from 4/2-4/5.  Wednesday 4/5 features an all-campus trash audit hosted by Alliance for Planet Earth on Cougar Mall from 6:00am-6:00pm.  APE will remove trash from campus dumpsters and with help from Physical Plant, transport all collected trash to the Cougar Mall. From that point, APE will spend the day weighing each bag of trash and sorting its contents into its different categories of materials that could have been recycled (glass, paper, aluminum, plastic, etc). At the end of the day, APE will weigh each category of materials and will be able to compare how much of what was thrown away was actually recyclable.  APE’s goal for this project is to promote the importance of recycling through both the visual impact of seeing our waste first hand and by showing that the things that we throw away do no disappear forever. We also hope to demonstrate to the campus community how much more of our trash is recyclable. 

Local Farms Fair
The Office of Sustainability is excited to host the campus's inaugural Sustainability Week from 4/2-4/5.  On Wednesday 4/4 from 12pm-2pm the Office presents the Local Farms Fair on George Street.  This information session will feature information tables from Pickney, Gruber and Ambrose farms.  Additionally, Clammer Dave and Local Lowcountry First will be attending the Local Farms Fair to discuss the importance of sustainable fishing and farming in Charleston.  This is a great opportunity to meet the farmers who grow the food we eat and learn more about food security and sourcing.  For more information please visit or email 

Speth Discussion
The Office of Sustainability is excited to host the campus's inaugural Sustainability Week from 4/2-4/5.  Wednesday 4/4 will feature a discussion from distinguished environmental lawyer, advocate, and writer Dr. James Gustave Speth in the Stern Center Ballroom from 4pm-5:30pm.  "Building the Future One Community at a Time" includes both a presentation and Q&A session with audience members.  We look forward to seeing you there!  For more information please visit or email
Greenbag Lunch Panel
The Office of Sustainability is excited to host the campus's inaugural Sustainability Week from 4/2-2/5.  Thursday 4/4 features the newest edition of Office's Greenbag Lunch Series, Sustainable Communities.  This panel includes sustainability expert and author Dr. James Gustave Speth, Colonel Mark Mykleby, senior advisor to the Joint Chiefs of Staff, environmental philosopher Dr. J. Baird Callicott, and environmental law and sustainability expert Dr. P. Brian Fisher.  Seating begins at 11:30 am, with the discussion and Q&A taking place from 12:00pm-2:00pm.  As usual, light refreshments will be provided, but all audience members are encouraged to bring their own bagged lunch to the panel.  We look forward to sharing a lively discussion with you!  For more information please visit or email

CofC Spring Bike Auction!

Folks, mark your calendars!  Here are details on the SGA Spring Bike Auction.  Check it out and maybe pick something up for yourself or your kids or anybody in need of some transportation.
SGA Bike Auction!

It's that time of year again! SGA is having it's semi-annual Bike Auction. Come to George Street between 11:00am - 2:00pm on April 3rd to bid on the bike of your choice! Also, we will have Salvation Army boxes available for you to donate your unwanted clothes. If you have questions, please contact LaQunya Baker at <> .

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

When Does the Bicycle SUB-CULTURE Become Mainstream Culture?

(..from a recent New York Times piece...

Ask a Dutch or Danish cyclist about the biking subculture back home, and she is liable to give you a quizzical look: "Subculture?" Bicycles are so entrenched in day-to-day life in the Netherlands and Denmark, the countries have official cycling embassies. It should therefore come as no surprise that Amsterdam and Copenhagen have each produced obsessives who, Tommy Ton<>-like, painstakingly catalog their city's parade of two-wheel street style. Marc van Woudenberg, of Amsterdamize<>, and Mikael Colville-Andersen, of Copenhagen Cycle Chic<>, agree that their respective cycling cultures are far more alike than different. "It's as normal as running water," Van Woudenberg says. "We don't fetishize it," Colville-Andersen adds. But that doesn't stop the two from carrying on something of a friendly rivalry online, where arguably subtle distinctions are sometimes writ large: classic Dutch bikes (Workcycles
 <>, Gazelle<>) have curved front bars, Danish bikes (Velorbis<>) diamond frames; Dutch cyclists dress funkier than their Danish counterparts, who go for a more chic look; the Dutch are more likely to try panniers, Danes stick with baskets; and while both have a thing for cargo bikes, the Dutch are fond of two-wheel models while Danes prefer tricycles, like those made by the Danish company Christiana<>. Above, a selection of street-style shots from both blogs establishes one major commonality: in Amsterdam and Copenhagen alike, lovelies on bikes rule the roads.

to see the entire article, click here

Monday, March 26, 2012

Charleston Moves Joins Mass Advocacy Effort in Washington

I spent three days last week in Washington for the annual Bicycle Summit...
All in all: very worthwhile.
Here's an account from our friend and ally Rachael Bronson at Palmetto Cycling Coalition:

Bridge Run Street Closing Information

All, here is a convenient notice regarding street closures for the Bridge Run and Bridge Run Expo.  Whether you plan to participate or not, make sure you don't contribute to gridlock this weekend!  Thanks go to CofC PD's Captain Reese for distributing this notice. Bridge Run Street Closures details

CofC Bicycle Policy

The College of Charleston has adopted an official bicycle and moped policy related to parking, operation, registration, etc.  Check it out here and let us know what you think!  This looks like a great step in the right direction and addresses quite a lot of concerns.  Will it help ensure the safety of all the members of our community?  Is there anything missing?  Thanks!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Important Charleston Traffic/Quality of Life Meeting

Mark Your Calendars for Monday, March 26 at 5pm.  City Council Chambers
The two-way conversion of St. Phillip and Coming is to be addressed at a public hearing.    Consultant engineer Rick Day recommended two-way conversion from the crosstown to Beaufain.  City and neighborhoods favor it, but there has been some doubt expressed by C of  C officials.
Charleston Moves generally favors two-way-ing streets because it almost inevitably calms traffic and makes for a safer, more pleasant environment.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

We're taking the liberty of re-posting this from StreetFilms, which has been presenting sensationally good videos on how our streets should be used.

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The Netherlands is widely recognized for having the highest cycling rates in the world. What's not so well known is that the Dutch don't bike so much because cycling is in their DNA. They do it because after the country started down the path toward car dependence, they made a conscious decision to change course. After many decades of deliberate policy to invest in cycling as a mode of transportation, the Netherlands has the most advanced bike infrastructure you'll ever see. Recenty Streetfilms joined a group of city leaders from Chicago, Washington, DC and Miami on a study tour of the Netherlands, through the Bikes Belong Foundation's Bicycling Design Best Practices Program. The program shows American transportation professionals and policy makers real life examples of what it looks like to invest in cost-effective bicycle facilities. This video takes you on a tour of the incredibly well thought out street designs in the Netherlands. You'll see the infrastructure, hear from the experts on the ground, and watch the tour participants react and imagine how they might implement similar designs in American cities.
From the Netherlands to America: Translating the World's Best Bikeway Designs from Streetfilms on Vimeo.



Monday, March 12, 2012

Why Johnny Can't Walk to School

Last week, we celebrated "Walk to School" Day. It's impossible to know how many kids actually marked the date by walking to school.  But one thing is clear: the trend is toward building ever-larger schools on a regional basis.  While it may look cheaper to do so by some measurements, the long-term costs may actually be higher.
In the Lowcountry, there is a good example of this trend -- a new school on Sullivan's Island.  We don't contend we know precisely how this debate should be concluded, but we think there are factors that should be considered.
This instructive video on the topic was prepared by Vince Graham, the developer of I'On, and a member of the Charleston Moves board.