News from our member organizations

Wanted: Awesome Organized Person to Join WA Bikes Team

You — the administrative support whiz looking for a part-time position working for something you can believe in. People describe you as:

  • Organized
  • Detail-oriented
  • A good communicator
  • Comfortable working in an open environment with a lot going on
  • Good at shifting between tasks quickly
  • Someone who makes others feel welcomed

Us — the statewide bike advocacy nonprofit in the nation’s #1 Bicycle Friendly State:

  • A great team of staff, board members, and volunteers and supporters who grow bicycling through education for school and family biking, information for local advocates and riders, promotion of bike travel/tourism, and effective public policy work to pass laws, support their implementation, and improve conditions on the ground.
  • A cool work space in the heart of Seattle’s Pioneer Square with easy bike and transit connections and indoor bike parking. (That is to say, we all bring our bikes inside.)
  • The organization working for the past 27 years to make bicycling accessible, convenient, safe, and fun.

You don’t need to be an expert on bike gear or a speedy high-mileage rider. You should be passionate about creating the conditions that enable people of all ages and abilities to ride bicycles.

The Seattle-based team: Blake, Barb, El, Jack, Seth, and Louise.

You’re someone who can relate effectively to people who come in with diverse backgrounds and different levels of biking experience. They come to us seeking advice about bike travel, commuting, family biking, places to ride, and other information related to bicycling.

You’re the kind of person who welcomes the learning opportunities you’ll have in the position and the chance to own the smooth operational success of some of our programs, along with contributing to the success of others.

Sound perfect? Read the details in the Administrative Coordinator_2014_Job Description. Send a cover letter highlighting both your skills and your interest in our mission along with a resume and names/contact information for three references to with the subject line “Administrative Coordinator application”.

Kate Johnston (left) from our Spokane office with Katie Ferris, a member of the Spokefest Association board in Spokane.

We’ll begin reviewing applications Wednesday, August 6, 2014. Position is open until filled.

CHANGE OF TIMELINE FROM ORIGINAL POSTING: We will conduct interviews around third or fourth week of August and anticipate having someone in the position by mid-September. Start date is somewhat flexible if the right person has special circumstances.

You’ll be right in the thick of things as we ramp up toward our big annual auction November 15 and beyond — the bike advocacy season runs all year long.

What are we really looking for? This slideshow should give you an idea.

Click to view slideshow.


The post Wanted: Awesome Organized Person to Join WA Bikes Team appeared first on Washington Bikes.

The Tyee Op-Ed: BC’s climate plan is working, so why stop now?

News from NW Energy Coalition - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 2:06pm
Josha McNab of the Pembina Institute explains that while British Columbia has made significant progress toward carbon reduction, there is room for improvement. A new Climate Action Plan would help reduce carbon while simultaneously strengthening B.C.'s clean energy economy.

Instagram Weekly Roundup: July Adventuring

News from Washington Trails Association - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 1:40pm

What did you see on trail this week? Everything from the summit of Mount Baker to a porcupine on the Pacific Crest Trail. Now, that's some serious adventuring, Washington.

Whether it's in your latest trip reports or on your Instagram feed, we love exploring Washington's wild places through your eyes. On Instagram? Follow us @washingtontrails and tag #washingtontrails when you're out adventuring this summer!

Local Efforts, Global Change: Sustainable Agriculture in South Africa

News from Conservation International - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 10:52am
In the Namaqualand region of South Africa, goat and sheep farmers are adopting more sustainable grazing practices, efforts that could help shift the global attitude toward sustainability.

Hills are Good for the Soul

Today’s post is written by Brad Chodos-Irvine, a former West Seattle resident who loves riding hills. Today Brad is exploring the hills surrounding London. This post originally ran on his blog The Low Cycle.

Hills. You either love them or hate them. Me, I really like riding hills. Going up, you get the fight against gravity and you “taste the effort”, as the French say. Going down, that effort is repaid as you experience gravity in the other direction. Fun!

West Seattle is a good place to ride hills. In 20 miles you can see some beautiful scenery, climb some great hills, and descend like crazy. Good fun in less than two hours.

Not all of us get to ride in the beautiful hill towns of France or Italy, or even around our local Mt Rainier, but the hills in Seattle aren’t so bad either in a pinch. Just up from Alki there are some great streets that have some serious hills. Here are a few that I like.

The intersection of College and Hughes.

College, Hughes, and 52nd streets are fun ones to tackle. It’s steep, has an OK road surface for climbing, and there are usually few automobiles. If you are descending this hill, be careful. The manhole covers are deep, and the road isn’t perfect. Add fall leaves, and a steep road and you can get in trouble.

But you get some good switchbacks, and will have stronger lungs when you are done. I like to do a loop around Alki out past the Fauntleroy Ferry. Again, good views, good scenery, good hills.

When you get to the intersection of Lincoln Park Way SW and Beach Drive SW, you can choose to go up the hill to the left, which is a good climb but the road isn’t good, and there isn’t much room. Instead, go the right and ride through Lincoln Park. You get this view instead and you can ride on the wide gravel path leading past Colman Pool, around the cove, and up a little hill back on to Fauntleroy.

If you continue right on Fauntleroy past the ferry you turn left on SW Wildwood Place, and then right on 45th Avenue SW. If you are getting hungry you can stop for some old-fashioned pastries and a coffee at The Original Bakery. The line is usually 10 deep inside the door – always a little too long on the week-ends when I’ve thought about stopping.  You continue up the hill on 45th and then it becomes Marine View Drive S.W. This is a good hill if you like long hills, and a great hill for doing repeats. It’s probably almost a mile up to the top.

As you head up the hill through the neighborhood where Marine View Drive starts just past SW Roxbury, you’ll notice that sidewalks end and that there is very little space for walking or cycling up this hill. If cars are approaching from behind as you start on this part of the hill, you just have no room. There isn’t usually too much traffic on this hill, but as you can see, there is really very little space to get up this hill if you are walking, and on a bike you have about 1-2 feet to the right of the white line.

Climbing Marine View Drive

This issue is worth following up with a separate post. Why do some neighborhoods not have any room to ride or to walk?

To continue the ride, there is a nice loop on the top of this hill that means you can come back down Marine View Drive.  On the way down pay attention coming around the corner. If a car is turning right up the hill from Roxbury while you are coming down around that corner, it can be a little frightening.

On the loop on the top of the hill, when you come to the stop sign on SW 106th Street, take a right and go for a few blocks to Seola Beach Drive, which is nice little out and back through a pretty ravine to a strange little sewage treatment outlet beach, but it’s a nice hill both ways, with no traffic. (Editor’s note: This loop description is a little confusing. View map.)

Lincoln Park gravel path

On the loop back you can take a nice detour again through Lincoln Park and ride on the gravel paths through the park. There are some little inclines that make for a relaxed alternative to riding along Fauntleroy with ferry traffic. Head back to Alki via Beach Drive SW.

See you in the hills!

The post Hills are Good for the Soul appeared first on Washington Bikes.

EPA Denies Hazardous Pesticide Use on 3 Million Acres of Texas Cotton Fields

News from Beyond Pesticides - Thu, 07/24/2014 - 5:50am
(Beyond Pesticides, July 24, 2014) Last week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) denied an emergency application to use a hazardous pesticide, propazine, on 3 million acres of Texas cotton fields, after groups representing environmental, public health, and organic farm interests urged the agency to reject the request based on environmental effects and the predictable […]

Appeals Court Allows Industry Misuse of Antibiotics in Animals to Continue

News from NRDC - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 10:00pm
NEW YORK (July 24, 2014) – In a 2-1 decision, the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not have to consider banning the practice of regularly feeding antibiotics to animals that are not sick despite its finding that such misuse of antibiotics threatens the effectiveness of essential human medicines. The appeals court overturned two district court rulings in cases brought by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and other groups, which directed the FDA to stop the routine use of certain antibiotics in healthy animals unless drug manufacturers proved the safety of such use.

Spend the Weekend with WTA

News from Washington Trails Association - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 3:31pm

Looking for a way to spend one of these beautiful Washington summer weekends?

Gather some close friends or family and join WTA on an overnight trip! Volunteering on weekend work parties is a great way to give back to trails, have a fun camping experience and get to know other people who love being outdoors, all at the same time.

You'll spend your weekend digging in the dirt with a fun crew of volunteers, eating a potluck meal around a campfire and sleeping under the stars in a spectacular outdoor setting. For most official weekend work parties, WTA provides a Saturday night meal; all you need to bring is a side dish to share.

So find your favorite potluck recipe and ask a couple of friends to join you on one of these weekend work parties.




Wildflowers off the Damfino Lakes Trail. Photo by halffast.

Damfino Lakes

July 26 & 27

Join WTA as we do general maintenance on this beautiful, popular trail. We'll be brushing, removing debris, regrading and improving drainage. After the potluck, you can take advantage of nearby overnight camping by taking an evening hike up to Excelsior Pass to enjoy a spectacular sunset! >> Sign up now for the Damfino weekend work party.




Sunrise at Park Butte. Photo by Paul Raymaker.

Schreibers Meadows

August 2 & 3

Enjoy panoramic views of imposing glaciers and welcoming meadows on this trip to maintain a section of the extremely popular area near Butte. You'll work in the shadow of Mount Baker, surrounded by fellow volunteers and hikers enjoying the incomparable views of the mountain. >> Sign up now for the Schreibers Meadows weekend work party.




Make Red Top Lookout your destination for the weekend. Photo by Eric Jain.

Racetrack Trail

August 30 & 31

Seize this opportunity to join WTA as we stay in the Red Mountain Fire Lookout for the weekend! This popular trail is located in the southwestern portion of Indian Heaven Wilderness; from Red Mountain you get a stunning panoramic view from Rainier all the way to Mount Hood.

>> Sign up now for the weekend work party at the Racetrack Trail.

Crosscut article: Are the feds simply shielding Columbia River dams from wrecking balls?

News from NW Energy Coalition - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 9:28am
Conservation groups, tribes, fishing groups and the state of Oregon are taking the federal government to court again because its Biological Opinion (BiOp), regarding Columbia River hydro operations, inadequately address the needs of the river's 13 endangered salmon species. Despite previous rulings in the plaintiff's favor, the federal government has delayed making court-ordered improvements to the BiOp.

Meet Zoe Kasperzyk

If you dropped by our office this summer or stopped at our table at Cascade Bicycle Club’s STP packet pick up, chances are you met our summer intern Zoe Kasperzyk.

Zoe, who grew up in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood biking and walking to her schools, came to Washington Bikes via New York. She is an Urban Planning/Sociology and Environmental Studies student at Bard College in the Hudson Valley, and an active member and leader of their bicycle co-op.

“During the cold and snowy winter at Bard, I began thinking about returning to Seattle for a summer internship. As I researched organizations to reach out to, it became more and more apparent that my main interest was in bicycle advocacy, planning, and encouragement,” she explained. “When I contacted Washington Bikes, I was thrilled to hear about all of the projects that I could become involved with. I was also fortunate to be awarded a grant for my work at WA Bikes through Bard’s Center for Civic Engagement.”

Each day is a little different and full of new things to learn, according to Zoe. Her projects have varied between conducting a survey with bike map distributors around the state; to creating a bicycle advocacy toolkit to help community advocates understand how to influence projects, plans and processes; and organizing the projects funded by Safe Routes to School for the past 10 years.

Zoe intends to make use of her newly acquired bicycle advocacy knowledge when she returns to New York this fall.

“I want to help Bard College attain the League of American Bicyclists’ Bicycle-Friendly University status and I want to help work on a bicycle map for the Mid-Hudson Valley area to encourage more ridership. I also hope the bike co-op will reach out more to the schools and surrounding communities through bicycle education programs,” asserted Zoe.

Zoe added that she will intern with Kingston (NY) Department of Planning and hopes that her work will include a bicycle infrastructure component.

We are grateful to have Zoe as a member of our team this summer. Her work will benefit bike advocates in all corners of our state and help us we continue to make Washington a better place for biking.

As a Community Action Award intern, Zoe has been blogging about her summer experience at Washington Bikes. You can read her entries on the Bard College Center for Civic Engagement blog.

The post Meet Zoe Kasperzyk appeared first on Washington Bikes.

Conservation Tools: Satellites Sound Fire Alarm in Tropical Forests

News from Conservation International - Wed, 07/23/2014 - 6:50am
A grant from NASA will help Conservation International continue to develop Firecast, a groundbreaking tool that uses satellite imagery to detect fires and predict fire threats in critical forests.

Governor Quinn Signs Clean Water Initiative

News from NRDC - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 10:00pm
CHICAGO (July 23, 2014) – Governor Patrick Quinn will sign into law today legislation that will help Illinois cities better prepare for the impacts of climate change.  The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) worked with the legislature and with Governor Quinn’s administration to develop the legislation and worked to support the bill’s passage.

NRDC: McCarthy Lays out Clear Case for Clean Power Plan

News from NRDC - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 10:00pm
WASHINGTON (July 23, 2014) – Natural Resources Defense Council President Frances Beinecke issued the following statement after Gina McCarthy, administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, testified before a congressional panel on carbon pollution standards:

New Zealand To Increase Scrutiny of Bee-killing Pesticides, Denies “Neonic” Application

News from Beyond Pesticides - Tue, 07/22/2014 - 9:01pm
(Beyond Pesticides, July 23, 2014) New Zealand’s Environmental Protection Authority is stepping up its requirements for a higher level of scientific evidence regarding the safety and effects of neonicotinoids -pesticides linked to bee decline- before considering them for approval. Just last month, the Authority declined an application of thiamethoxam, a neonicotinoid, for use as a […]

NRDC: Polluter Partnership Wrong to Reject Climate Action

News from NRDC - Mon, 07/21/2014 - 10:00pm
WASHINGTON (July 22, 2014) – The following is a statement from Peter Altman, Climate Campaign director at the Natural Resources Defense Council, on misguided complaints issued today by the Partnership for a Better Energy Future about proposed first-ever federal limits on carbon pollution from the nation’s existing power plants.

Tamarisk Tree’s Role as ‘Invasive’ in Southwest Questioned

News from Beyond Pesticides - Mon, 07/21/2014 - 9:01pm
(Beyond Pesticides, July 22, 2014) As drought persists across the western U.S., farmers, ranchers, and government authorities looking for solutions to water worries have picked a tough battle, and many are questioning whether it’s worth the fight. The target is the ‘invasive,’ tamarisk tree, also known as salt cedar, a hardy evergreen that can grow […]

National Bike Challenge: Local Prize Winners Announced

We’re into the heat of July and midway through the National Bike Challenge! Over 43,000 riders from across the USA have collectively ridden 12,277,523 miles.

In the Evergreen State, 817 riders have pedaled 242,707 miles. That’s a trip to the moon! Slightly more than half of our miles (51%) have been for recreation/fun; the remaining 49% were for transportation.

As promised, we drew for a round of local prizes and the winners are:

The Detours Coffee Bag is a versatile dry bag that can be attached almost anywhere on your bike.

Detours “Coffee Bag” dry bag:

  • Dennis Chambers of Grand Coulee
  • Lisa McCoy of Port Angeles

All Kinds of Riders for All Kinds of Reasons note cards:

  • Annika Ledbetter of Seattle
  • Lou Khazoyan of Kent

Set of Washington bike maps:

  • Alex Krob of La Center
  • Amy Ruddy of Yakima

It is NOT too late to join us in the National Bike Challenge! Join today and start tracking your bike trips and miles. We will do a second round prize drawings in September and riders at the Bronze level and above will be eligible. Participants can also qualify for monthly prize drawings at the national level.

Many thanks to Detours for being our local sponsor!

The post National Bike Challenge: Local Prize Winners Announced appeared first on Washington Bikes.

Oregonian article: Carbon limits and skeptical regulators force new scrutiny of PacifiCorp coal plant investments

News from NW Energy Coalition - Mon, 07/21/2014 - 3:01pm
The Oregon Public Utility Commission has concerns regarding PacifiCorps' continued investments in coal-fired power plants. Regulators insist that the company should consider climate regulations and explore clean energy alternatives in the next iteration of its long-term resource plan.