For Kilian Loftis, cycling is a way of life. His father put him on a bike at age two and now the fourth-year UVic engineering student cycles 500 kilometres a week during summer and two-wheels his way to campus, home and around the city year-round.
“I’ve never owned a car and don’t see any reason why I would,” says Loftis, president of the UVic Cycling Club and among the more than 2,000 who regularly cycle to campus. “It’s part of my lifestyle, I stay in shape and cycling is a lot of fun. It’s one less car on the road and every little bit helps.” Loftis notes his carbon footprint is further reduced, as manufacturing a bicycle creates fewer carbon emissions than assembling a car.
Nearly 8,000 members of UVic’s campus community use public transit, pedal power and shoe leather in getting to and from campus every day. UVic supports sustainable transportation through dedicated bike paths, the student UPASS transit program, a subsidized employee bus pass option, and amenities and infrastructure for cyclists.
Cycling, transportation options and reducing individuals’ carbon footprint are key themes of UVic’s second annual Sustainability Week, Oct. 13 to 16.
“At UVic, sustainability is our commitment to future generations,” says Kristi Simpson, associate vice-president of financial planning and operations. “Our vision builds on the collective action of the university community through planning, shared learning, grassroots activities and institutional leadership.”
Sustainability Week promotes sustainable lifestyles and aims at getting people out of their cars to reduce carbon emissions, vehicle traffic on campus and parking demand.
A host of activities include free bike tune-ups, a bike maintenance workshop, a mural art project at the Campus Bike Centre, and a birthday celebration – with cake – to mark the centre’s second anniversary.
For more information on the Sustainability Week activities and events including a documentary film on food waste is available at uvic.ca/sustainability/involved/events-special/index.php.