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UMD Employee Wellness Program
Summer 2011: UMD Bike/Walk to Work Week
July 5-8, 2011

Written by Lita C. Wallace, Wellness Coordinator


On Thursday, July 7, it was misty at first, but the clouds cleared up a little before 8:00 a.m. just in time for arriving bikers and walkers of UMD's second annual Bike/Walk to Work Day sponsored by UMD's Department of Human Resources/Employee Wellness Program and the Office of Sustainability.

A total of 48 employees pre-registered to participate in this event to bike or walk to work on July 5 to July 8. Out of the 48 people that pre-registered, 20 employees biked to work on Thursday, July 7, wherein a special celebration with breakfast and vendor fair was held. The 20 employees biked and walked a total of 89.54 miles. Catherine Rackliffe of the Office of Equal Opportunity, biked 13 miles one way--the farthest distance out of all the participants.

During the noon hour, it was exciting to see 12 employees join the Group Bike Ride around campus, which was led by Paul Treuer of Knowledge Management Center and Susan Maher, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts. The group had so much fun they decided to make it a weekly event and bike to Chester Park every Thursday for a picnic, with each person bringing their own lunch.

UMD Auditors Al Decker and Michelle Balthazor even biked round trip to Glensheen to attend a meeting.

Some of the participants commented that they bike or walk to work regularly.

Mindy Granley of the Office of Sustainability stated that the 20 employees who biked or walked to work on Thursday with 89.54 miles travelled, prevented 80.2 pounds of greenhouse gas emissions from entering our atmosphere.  (Calculations based on the Cool Air Clean Planet Calculator, V6.6). In addition,

  • if they made the same choice just 10 days per month, it would reduce commuting emissions by around 4.3 metric tons over the course of a year.
  • if they made the same choice every workday, it would reduce 9.5 metric tons of GHG emissions over the course of a year.  This would be equal to the carbon sequestered by planting 221 trees and letting them grow for 10 years! (Source: EPA Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator).

If all the forty eight employees biked or walked to work this week, even though some did not attend the events on Thursday, they would have travelled a total of 166.79 miles and they would have prevented 148.6 pounds of greenhouse gas emissions from entering our atmosphere.  (Calculations based on the Cool Air Clean Planet Calculator, V6.6). In addition,

  • if they made the same choice just 10 days per month, it would reduce commuting emissions by around 9 metric tons over the course of a year.
  • if they made the same choice every workday, it would reduce 17.5 metric tons of GHG emissions over the course of a year.  This would be equal to the carbon sequestered by planting 407 trees and letting them grow for 10 years! (Source: EPA Greenhouse Gas Equivalencies Calculator)

Congratulations to the employees who biked/walked to work this week: Jack Aldrich, Shelia Autio, Michelle Balthazor, Tim Bates, Gordee Bennett, Susan Bourgoyne, Al Decker, Angie Forsberg, Bryan French, Rachel Gilbertson, Dan glisczinski, Steve Graham, Mindy Granley, Terry Guggenbuehl, Andrew Kimball, Lucas Kramer, Sandi Larson, Keith Lodge, Susan Maher, JoAnn Morley, Rita Ohman, Cathy Rackliffe, Sarah Schweiss, Corbin Smyth, Mary Sneve and Paul Treuer. Each individual received a UMD Cookbook, The Path to an International Taste of UMD, as a participant gift and prizes such as reflective leg bands, water bottle cages, LED light (front), Stop sign taillight, reflective vest, LED leg band, mini bell, long sleeve reflective shirt, marathon socks, larnyard and more.


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