University of Calgary

Sustainable Alberta announces Commuter Challenge results

UToday HomeJune 18, 2013

By Amy Glassman

Sustainability Street Team volunteers Gladys Nuñez- Nogueira (left) and Yana Soldatenko are seen registering a first year engineering student, Sarah Sanni.  Photo by Amy GlassmanSustainability Street Team volunteers Gladys Nuñez- Nogueira (left) and Yana Soldatenko are seen registering a first year engineering student, Sarah Sanni. Photo by Amy GlassmanThe University of Calgary showed significant improvement in the National Commuter Challenge as participation increased from 300 campus members logging their commute last year to 450 this year.

With participating students, staff and faculty reporting at least one sustainable commute, the University of Calgary collectively traveled just over 48,500 kilometers sustainably, saving 3,700 litres of fuel and burning 279,000 calories.

The 51-per-cent increase in participation can be partially attributed to the enthusiasm of Sustainability Street Team members and SustainabilityON Coordinators who took the initiative to share the event with their friends and colleagues.

“I shared the event with friends and while volunteering I asked the registrants to spread the word by telling their classmates and coworkers to join the University of Calgary as students or staff/faculty and take part in the Commute Challenge,” says Street Team member and continuing education student Gladys Nuñez-Nogueira.

During the challenge, participants recorded their commutes using the online tracking tool provided by The Sustainable Alberta Association. The tool allowed participants to view the positive impact of using a method of transportation alternative to driving alone.

“I carpooled instead of driving on my own to support the commuter challenge,” said Ed Buchan of Residence Services. “I was quite surprised at the savings that were produced with carpooling. I will certainly try to do more carpooling or other combinations of commuting to reduce my carbon footprint.”

Buchan was also one of the five lucky winners of the Commuter Challenge draw for a $50 gift card to The University of Calgary Bookstore, which all University of Calgary participants were entered into.

The other winners were: Biological Science student, Brodie Lipon; Business Major, Tess Rohleder; Centre for International Students and Study Abroad Student Intake/Accounting Assistant, Xiao Wang and Legal Services Executive Assistant, Tammy Faas.

Since 2006, the University of Calgary has shown support for sustainable commuting by taking part in the National Commuter Challenge alongside hundreds of other Canadian organizations. To learn more about the Commuter Challenge across Canada and on campus visit www.ucalgary.ca/sustainability/commuter_challenge