This week’s featured blog Friday is written by Björn Gíslason, AGR Consultant and Bike Enthusiast, about AGR Dynamics’ participation in “Hjólað í Vinnuna” or “Bike to Work” campaign. AGR Dynamics was proud to compete in this years campaign that worked to both get all of our employees moving and decrease our carbon footprint for the month of May.
Every year in the beginning of May, the Icelandic Olympic and Sports Association organises a campaign encouraging people to use a more sustainable form of commuting to work: namely your own two feet. This May, the campaign was run for the 14th year, and lasts 3 weeks. Each workplace is grouped according to number of employees and there is a competition between the workplaces, rating them according to how many days were registered as non-car days divided by the total number of employees.
During these 14 years we have seen significant increase in number of people using their bike as a preferred way of commuting to work every day. This has caused Reykjavík and the surrounding towns to improve their biking infrastructure with many new separated bike lanes and other improvements. Slowly, as their numbers increases, Icelandic bicycle commuters are less being frowned upon, and taken as a normal part of the morning and afternoon traffic.
I have been interested in biking for quite some time, and decided last fall when I started working for AGR Dynamics to use my bike to commute to work every day. It was sometimes challenging to get out on the bike during the winter when the snow was pouring down, with heavy wind and temperatures well below zero, but I discovered the weather is usually not as bad as it looks from the window, while your holding your warm cup of morning coffee – and it feels good to be a badass (Velominati Rule #9: http://www.velominati.com/the-rules/#9).
So as the campaign started, I registered AGR and encouraged my colleagues to take part.
Of the 35 employees at the Icelandic office, 12 participated. As a company, we registered 95 non-car days, with a total of 1351km biked during the period. Among the 68 participating companies with 20-39 employees, we ended the campaign in 21st place.
We also had a friendly in-house competition between the different departments in the office. Team AGR Consultants, Team NAV, Team Dev and Team Admin. We competed in the number of days / number of team members, number of kilometers / number of team members, and total kilometers biked per team. Of course the best team won, towering over the rest of the bunch.
As you may know, here in Iceland we can expect any kind of weather in early May. This year we were quite lucky with the weather, not having to plough through inches of snow on any of the days.
Next year we are hoping to do a lot better, with the new office having great facilities for those who like to ride their bike to work.