VBSR members CATMA, University of Vermont (Gold), Champlain College and the UVM Medical Center (Gold) are all part of helping make bikesharing company Bird a success for the community. (photo courtesy of Bird)

VBSR Member News Round Up – 7/6/23

CATMA, University of Vermont, Champlain College and the UVM Medical Center: Bikeshare returned to the Greater Burlington area last week, a year after it disappeared overnight. The new provider, Bird, will set up racks of bikes in strategic locations like the previous company, but they will also employ a system of “Nests,” which make the system more responsive and flexible. Nests are geo-fenced areas where bikes can be left – and their locations can change depending on the data Bird collects on usage patterns. That data will be shared with VBSR member Chittenden Area Transportation Management Association (CATMA) and its partners – which include fellow members the University of Vermont (Gold Member), Champlain College and the UVM Medical Center (Gold Member). This way, all parties can collaborate dynamically on where bike users most want to pick them up and drop them off. Learn more here.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont: Gold Member BCBSVT’s Hike, Bike and Paddle 2023 event celebrates being outside and enjoying the natural beauty of our state. Can’t get outside? BCBSVT is hosting this year’s event virtually to make it accessible to all! From Saturday, July 15 through Sunday, July 30, you can share photos of yourself, family, and friends getting outside to hike, bike, paddle, and swim! For each photo shared, BCBSVT is donating $5 to Camp Exclamation Point, an organization that provides continuity and community to underserved rural Vermont kids through a week-long residential summer camp. Learn more here.

University of Vermont: Tasty examples of innovation and sustainability were on display – and plates! – at the recent RISE Summit at UVM. The dishes featured resulted from collaboration between Gold Member UVM’s food systems program and the sustainability and campus partnership manager for Sodexo, which runs campus dining. They worked together to minimize food waste at the event and demonstrate what they call a “circular” approach to menu planning and execution, in which as little food as possible is wasted at every step, from growing to sourcing, cooking to eating. Learn more here.

NOFA-VT: NOFA-VT members are a community of eaters, farmers, activists, educators, businesses, and families who believe that a better food and farming system is possible. Those members help shape the movement for a just, sustainable food system and demonstrate support for farm and community resilience. Believing that cost should not be a barrier to membership, NOFA-VT has announced an option for Vermonters to become a member for $1. You read that right ­­– $1. Learn more here.

Vermont Green FC: Vermont Green Football Club certainly isn’t the first sports team to address climate change. But they are the only squad in the United States with climate justice as its driving principle, putting it at the vanguard of a burgeoning movement to make sports a platform for climate action. A recent profile piece on this (winning!) Vermont soccer team in The Guardian explores the importance of being values-led, surpassing expectations and following hunches. Learn more here.

SunCommon: A cast of leading Vermont politicians gathered at the headquarters of Champion Member SunCommon last week to announce the start of a program designed to reduce barriers for low- and middle-income families that want to install residential solar energy systems. Michael Regan, administrator of the federal Environmental Protection Agency, stood alongside U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., U.S. Sen. Peter Welch, D-Vt., and U.S. Rep. Becca Balint, D-Vt., to launch the new program, called Solar for All. Learn more here.