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  • Mon September 18 2006
  • Posted Sep 18, 2006
Solar Bike Tour to Wind Through Five Midwestern States (St. Paul, MN...) Renewable energy supporters will take to their bicycles for eight days in September to showcase the use of wind power and ethanol in the five Midwestern states. Beginning Thursday, September 21st and ending Thursday, September 28th, the latest “Green Bike Tour” will demonstrate that renewable energy strengthens rural economies and secures America’s energy future. Riders will team with local businesses, farmers, elected officials, energy producers, and activists to show the success and potential of renewable energy. “The Green Bike Tour gives us an opportunity to highlight solutions that will move the Midwest into a new energy economy,” said David Osterberg of the Iowa Policy Project, a non-profit organization that promotes public policy to foster economic opportunity while safeguarding the health and well-being of Iowa's people and the environment. “There are plenty of people demonstrating how they can securely produce energy and save money." The tour begins in Waterloo on September 21st, at the Center for Energy and Environmental Education at the University of Northern Iowa. In addition to highlighting wind and ethanol projects in the Midwest, bikers will demonstrate practical uses of solar power. Bikes will be equipped with solar panels that produce electricity to help with uphill rides or play music. “We have done this before in the Midwest and in Europe,” continued Osterberg, who led Green Bike Tours in 1999, 2002 and 2004. “It’s been a great way to show, in our own small-scale way, the large-scale uses and benefits of renewable energy. It’s good for the economy and the environment – both of which are big concerns here and across the country.” Green bikers will visit wind farms, college campuses, solar installations, and complete the journey at the Conference of Engineers for a Sustainable World in Iowa City on September 28th. "This tour serves as a powerful reminder for all of us in the Upper Midwest that there are people and projects highlighting our potential as the regional leader on renewable energy for the 21st century," said Michael Noble, Executive Director of Fresh Energy, a non-profit organization leading the transition to a clean energy system by harnessing research, advocacy and community engagement. "This tour highlights the need for renewable energy sources that creates jobs and protects our economy and environment. As the cyclists and supporters on the tour demonstrate beautifully, we can do both." "We are encouraging everyone, whether or not they bike, to join us on the Tour. We all can and must be a part of the solution," said Teresa Galluzzo of the Iowa Policy Project. "Visiting the Tour will inform folks on what they can do to use and promote clean, efficient energy available here in the Midwest." “People will be able to follow us throughout the tour,” Tom Cook of the University of Iowa’s Environmental Health Sciences Research Center added. “As in the past, we’ll have a website where we’ll talk about our progress and experiences, and of course we’ll be contacting media all along the route.” Readers, listeners, and viewers can check www.greenbiketour.blogspot.com for schedule updates as well as highlights from previous bike tours. Media advisories are available with individual and day-specific media market information. The Green Bike Tour 2006 is sponsored by: The Iowa Policy Project, The University of Iowa's Environmental Health Sciences Research Center, Fresh Energy, The League of Rural Voters, and The Fred & Charlotte Hubbell Foundation. Tour Schedule: Thursday, Sept 21: Waterloo, IA, Cedar Falls, IA, and Decorah, IA Friday, Sept. 22: La Crosse, WI and Austin, MN Saturday, Sept. 23: Mankato, MN and St. Peter, MN Sunday, Sept. 24: Granite Falls and Lake Benton, MN Monday, Sept. 25: Sioux Falls, SD and Sioux City, IA Tuesday, Sept. 26: Oakland, NE and Oakland, IA Wednesday, Sept. 27: Ames, IA and Grinnell, IA Thursday, Sept. 28: Cedar Rapids, IA and Iowa City, IA

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