Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Gruten - turning coffee waste into soap... and how bikes are involved...

Register of Initiatives in Pedal Powered Logistics - RIPPL #22
Founder Siri Mittet and Hurtigruten
Launched in 2014, Gruten is a small business which collects coffee waste from cafes in Oslo on an e-cargo bike. The bike has a name - Hurtigruten, after a Norwegian cruise ship operator. The coffee waste is used to produce hand made natural scrub soap and as compost for growing mushrooms.
Photo credit: Gruten
The e-cargo bike is integral to Gruten’s business model; founder Siri Mittet intended to use the bike for logistics from the very beginning. Indeed the company has a focus on sustainability in general; all profits go back into the running of the business and to social causes. For a business such as Gruten, an e-cargo bike is first and foremost a convenient form of transport. However using a bike can also make a statement about the ethos and aims of the organisation.
Hurtigruten (Photo Credit: GrowLab Oslo)
Gruten and the cafes enjoy a mutually beneficial relationship; the cafe has their coffee waste taken away and Gruten gets the main ingredient for the soap. The soap is sold in shops in and around Oslo; delivered by bike as much as possible. The finished soap is often sold in the same cafes the coffee grounds were sourced from; in these cases, a sticker is placed on the product saying so. The product is effective at getting rid of grease from hands, so is popular with people and businesses involved in bike maintenance.

Innovations: waste, recycling

Organisation: Gruten
Sector: Private
City: Oslo
Country: Norway
Bike Manufacturer: Bullitt
Basis: Permanent
Twitter: https://twitter.com/GrutenOslo
Contact: Siri Mattet / post@gruten.no

Sources:

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Thursday, August 3, 2017

Waalre: Waste collection by e-trike and trailer

Register of Initiatives in Pedal Powered Logistics - RIPPL #21
Photo credit: Gemeente Waalre
Gemeente Waalre, a small Dutch municipality located south of Eindhoven, has been piloting use of an e-trike with trailer for domestic waste collection. The 9-month trial, which ran from September 2016 in Voldijn, a small area of the town a 10 minute ride from the centre, aimed to reduce traffic in the area whilst increasing collection frequency. The e-trike replaced the truck which had previously serviced the area, and collections rose from once to twice per week in order to prevent rubbish piling up and beginning to smell.
The custom Redkutsche e-trike, which along with the trailer has a capacity of 200kg, allows all of the different waste streams (waste, nappies/diapers, food waste, plastic, metal and drink cartons) to be separately collected simultaneously. A third goal of the scheme was to reduce the amount of waste which was not recycled; in other words, to encourage residents to recycle more. Three months into the trial, the amount of waste going to landfill had approximately halved.
e-Trike rider Roel features in Newsletters sent to residents
Gemeente Waalre engaged the local community throughout the process and the trike rider, Roel van den Boom, featured in regular newsletters. Residents were able to put a human face and name to the scheme, a face which was present and accessible in the neighbourhood because he was riding a trike rather than a truck. This appears to have aided the popularity of the scheme, which has in turn increased cooperation and contributed to it’s success.

Gemeente Waalre are not alone in recognising the potential of bikes for waste collection; in fact, waste is a growing trend in cycle-logistics. Many other examples exist across the world and we’ll be featuring the most interesting ones in future posts.


Innovations: Waste

Organisation: Gemeente Waalre
Sector: Government
City: Waalre
Country: The Netherlands
Bike Manufacturer(s): Radkutsche
Basis: Pilot


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Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Disaster Relief Trials: Community, Racing and Preparedness

Register of Initiatives in Pedal Powered Logistics - RIPPL #20
2014 Disaster Relief Trials-48
Photo credit: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland
The American Pacific Northwest sits on the Cascadia fault line, which runs north to south from Vancouver Island, Canada, past the cities of Vancouver, Seattle and Portland, before reaching northern California. The last major earthquake in the area was in 1700, but due to the nature of the fault, the next one could be very strong, with the potential to cause catastrophic levels of destruction in the area.

But what does this have to do with cycle logistics? In response to the threat of a future major earthquake, members of Portland's cycling community have held a series of events dubbed the Disaster Relief Trials (DRT), to test just how prepared they are.
2014 Disaster Relief Trials-13
Photo credit: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland
In a disaster it is critical that food, water and medical supplies can quickly reach the places they are needed most. Conventional supply methods are often unable to operate when roads are damaged or fuel is scarce. The group has therefore identified the bicycle, and in particular the cargo bike, as central to their response.

The DRT is an exercise that trains a diverse group of volunteers from across the community to be able to respond to disasters using their cargo bikes. The format of the DRT turns this rather serious exercise into something enjoyable; a race. This injects a realistic sense of urgency to proceedings, making it a community event that is, fun builds skills and provokes thoughts.
2014 Disaster Relief Trials-19
Photo credit: Jonathan Maus/BikePortland
Participants are challenged to carry heavy loads of water and supplies across rough terrain. Consignments of delicate medical supplies are simulated with eggs, which must make it to the end of the course intact. The courses are carefully picked to simulate a possibly hostile landscape, devoid of useful infrastructure. The competition format also encourages the collaboration that would be necessary in real life: competitors work together to help haul each other's loaded bikes over obstacles such as walls and ditches.
DSC_0070
Photo credit: Kelley Stangl
The format proved so popular and effective in Portland that Seattle and San Francisco have followed suit, holding their own DRTs. The idea is spreading too; the town of Bend, Oregon, held it's own DRT in June 2017 and a Winter version of the DRT was held at the 2016 Winter Cycling Congress in Minneapolis. For a more detailed account of the DRT, watch the video or click on the links below for further reading. 
Portland DRT from Russ Roca on Vimeo.

Innovations: Racing, Disaster Relief

Organisation: Disaster Relief Trials
Sector: Community Organisation
Cities: Portland, Seattle, San Francisco, Minneapolis, Memphis
Country: USA



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