Polygon UR Team Takes First Steps to CO2 Neutral Season at Testing Camp in Portugal

Dec 13, 2019
by UR Team  
P: Hoshi Yoshida


PRESS RELEASE: Polygon UR Team

Our first team trip happened last month in Lousã Portugal. We were there to test some suspension and get a feel for the Portuguese dirt. This was also our first chance to set the table for our CO2 neutral goal for 2020. Following our previous press release, here’s what we were able to do as our first steps with our new goal.

P: Hoshi Yoshida
P: Hoshi Yoshida

No plastic water bottles were harmed during this trip

bigquotesWe’ve had a lot of positive feedback on our plan to neutralize our CO2 for 2020 so we decided to start earlier and apply this to our Portugal team camp last month. We bought a reusable 10L water tank to refill all our CamelBak bottles from riders and staff. That saves us from buying one single use plastic water bottle for the whole week, and on top of being greener it’s also easier on the shopping side.Fabien Cousinié, UR Team Manager


We avoided plastic as much as possible by bringing our own shopping bags and by buying food that is not over-packaged. Our accommodation and guide Wheelers MTB Holidays, was well equipped with recycling so that we could at least recycle the packaging we could not avoid.


Flexitarian

We varied our diet and had 4 days with plant based meals and 3 days with meat. When eating animal products, we prioritize organic products as well as meat with a smaller footprint like chicken.
Did you know that 1kg of beef is the equivalent of driving your car for 63 miles?
Everybody enjoyed trying new things and this red curry recipe was definitely a favorite of the crew.

bigquotesA normal week for our team on a camp would include a carnivorous diet for at least two meals per day. We went to Portugal earlier this month and as a group decided that we would eat more plant-based for the week.Tracey Hannah, UR Team rider

We got teleported in Lousã

We wish this could be possible, but we still had to fly from different parts of the world to meet down in Lousã. However, we got as many people as possible on direct flights to reduce the emissions. To offset the remaining ones, we have partnered with Climate Care. Over the season, every trip will be entered in a spreadsheet that calculates the amount of CO2 that was generated.


For this team camp in Portugal, the total emissions included everyone’s flight as well as the driving mileage (to and from the airport, shuttling in Lousã, etc.). It came up to 9.55 tonnes of CO2 which means we had to pay 124.74$ CAD to Climate Care to offset through a portfolio they put together. This portfolio is specifically made for individuals or small businesses who want to offset their emissions, but don’t generate enough to make the credits viable for most projects.

Here’s one of the four projects included in that portfolio:


Was our test camp still productive? Yes
Was it hard? No

This showed us how keeping our CO2 neutral goal in sight isn’t so hard.

We promise we are not always gonna talk about it all the time, we will just keep you updated on solutions we find and the progress we make from time to time.

Next time you will hear us it will probably be for some riding actions!


198 Comments

  • 88 19
 Instead of praise the initiative let’s all of us be a bunch of a*sholes and bash the shit out of them.

Good one PB readers, good one...
  • 21 3
 Facts. Yeah, they suck.
  • 2 0
 @hifiandmtb: Here's all the publicly available info from the VCS registry on the April Salumei if you want more facts than the Mirror provides. www.vcsprojectdatabase.org/#/project_details/1122 probably worth pointing out the obvious that Polygon UR have nothing to do with any of the projects mentioned in the article posted.
  • 14 2
 I propose we all contribute by not buying a new bike for at least 4 years.
  • 4 1
 @alaska83: That and an industry that isn't in a perpetual cycle of introducing endless new standards
  • 13 0
 Right, I don't understand what seems to be the common argument here of: "They are still producing CO2 so they're just wasting their time, they might as well just keep doing what they're doing."

People can't seem to wrap their heads around the fact that small changes can make a big difference when everyone practices them.

Obviously we as a race aren't going to undo all of the damage, but if everyone is a bit more conscious about their impact, it will make a difference. These comments make me lose a bit more faith in humanity every day...
  • 2 0
 @justanothermatt: you mean telecommunication? www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/jul/17/internet-climate-carbon-footprint-data-centres.

Apparently we should have stuck to magazines and topo maps.
  • 2 0
 @hardcore-hardtail: You are right that the argument to do nothing cause gains are small, is stupid. A culture shift is needed on these issues and bringing awareness can help. I think people find it nauseating though when a business seeks publicity for things like this when often the true reasoning is more sales. That warrants criticism so I hope they get a pat on the back but also reflect a little deeper too.
  • 3 1
 @hardcore-hardtail: Making small changes only can take you in a positive direction if the changes you do are based on correct statements. It's no problem to do research nowadays without being an expert. Without hearing different sides to make your own conclusions it's like following a religion where you just get told what you have to believe.
  • 1 0
 @fossydh: Are you arguing that the changes listed above will not reduce the CO2 emissions that the Polygon team is directly responsible for?

Or are you saying that you don't believe that green house gas emissions have a negative impact on the planet?
  • 5 0
 @alaska83: I could see that point of view but I think that once people realize the impact they have on the planet and take action to mitigate those impacts their eyes are open. One person's actions can make a small improvement but if you can help others reflect and realize their own impacts on the planet then you can multiply your impact times two.

I commend Polygon for realizing their impact and trying to push others to become conscious of their own impacts so that they can hopefully make small changes too.

Some may view it as shoving environmentalism down their throat but everyone else sees it as spreading knowledge and trying to have a positive impact.

Take plastic bottles for instance, there is absolutely no reason that anyone not in an emergency situation should need bottled water, yet it seems like everyone still uses it out of convenience.

If influental companies and people don't promote sustainable behavior then who will?
  • 2 8
flag fossydh (Dec 13, 2019 at 14:36) (Below Threshold)
 @hardcore-hardtail: you can reduce CO2 but i would not call it green house gas. Our atmosphere maybe has absolutely nothing to do with a closed green house, so to call it green house gas is not correct. Yes, there exist real green houses with CO2 tanks on the side to go from 400ppm to 800ppm CO2 for the tomatoes to grow better and in this case, for sure you can call CO2 as a green house gas !

Who cares, nowadays nobody thinks on a real green house. But i prefer not to say green house anyway. When we talk about gases in the atmosphere which have to do with earth temperature everyone knows the steam is the most important one. The reflection of CO2 is not the big deal compared to the steam. But to not make only black and white statements, i just would say that i do not believe the weather models. I believe that clima predictions are not possible and that reducing CO2 is having no better effect for us. Weather and clima is so complicated. I believe not the mainstream, i believe that it would be maybe better when we had a middle earth temperature that is a little bit higher than now. In history we had sections with higher temperatures and it seems to be good for the humans (a population grows in warm regions more than in cold regions). Same with CO2, the more you have in the atmosphere, the greener the planet. A C4-Plant can use CO2 and light more efficient like a C3 Plant, so not all plants would benefit from more CO2.

Important to know is also that some experts say when you double the CO2 in the atmosphere you do not have a linear uv reflection effect. The first ppm of CO2 are way more important, they have the biggest reflection and more CO2 doesn't change very much. The reflection is only in a few parts of the spectrum, so the rest of the spectrum does not reflect any uv at all, no matter how much of CO2 you have. Steam is here much more important with a very, very wide reflection spectrum compared to CO2.

I have no deeper knowledge, but this is what i maybe believe today. It's more a feeling than knowledge. When you dig deeper you are confronted with so many things, it's so complex. I´m not very good in physics astronomy or biology but the debate is maybe more about politics.
  • 8 0
 @fossydh: So it sounds like you don't think green house gases have an effect on our climate.

I am very curious what you are talking about when you reference "steam" and its effects on global temperatures? I have never heard anything like that before, possibly a language barrier?

Most of what you said is scientifically incorrect and it is certainly not politics although most would have you believe otherwise.

The warming effect that CO2 and other greenhouse gasses like methane have on the earth is physics related. It has to do with the size of the CO2 molecule and the particular wavelength of sunlight that is being reflected off of the earth's surface. Greenhouse gas molecules are the exact size that is very effective at blocking this particular wavelength so less heat is able to escape our atmosphere with higher concentrations of these gases, much like a greenhouse. Which is quite unfortunate for the entire human race really.

I do have extensive knowledge on this subject which is why I try to share it with others!

Cheers!
  • 3 0
 @fossydh: This might be the least intelligent PB comment I’ve ever read, and I’ve read some doozies. All I can do is shake my head.
  • 3 2
 @hardcore-hardtail: steam was the answer from google translation for the German word "Wasserdampf". Maybe a language barrier, my english is very bad so i have to trust the google translator. But if you have extensive knowledge you should have known what I meant.
  • 1 0
 @fossydh: Understandable, I can only speak one language so kudos for that. Now I'm really curious, the only thing that I can come up with is clouds?

I know methane is better at blocking reflected sunlight than CO2 but it isn't spewed into the atmosphere as readily as CO2 so it isn't as much of a concern to us.

Otherwise I can't think of what gas in our atmosphere is more dangerous to humans than CO2. THis is widely accepted by the scientific community.
  • 1 0
 @carbonbootprint: In the past we had a lot of different CO2 and Temperature combinations. There is a handful of methods (like ice drilling) to get some (local) data from the earth history of thousands of years. This should be proof enough. Sad that normal people don't take a look at those long time graphics and that they believe the promoted correlations like the hockey stick. This was the graphic everyone of us have seen so often over years in the media. This graphic made us to believe all that. The hockey stick is one of the examples how easy it was to wash the brain of a whole civilization years ago. Nowadays they use other graphics.
  • 1 0
 @hardcore-hardtail: I think the right word for "Wasserdampf" is water vapor.

I doesn't mean clouds, but clouds are very important for weather and to get local clima data you need weather data over decades. If you measure local sun hours and temperature over decades you can see the big correlation. A warmer average temperature in one year mostly means that you had less clouds. Clouds are a very important thing for local temperature data. In Austria are some places where they have data from over 100 years. Interesting fact is that they have more sun hours in the summers now but not less snow in the winter. They measure a lot of things, like the snowfall limit to the sea height. How deep is the snow. How many days with snow. The data shows that the glaciers get smaller not because of the winters, it's because of the warmer summers. That's not so bad because tourism's is very ideal - they have nice summers and also good winters. Hard to believe, but this is what the local data of the lift stations shows.
  • 1 0
 @fossydh: what you seem to neglect in your information about Austrian snow levels, is that although winter snow levels are stable, spring snow levels have decreased and winter temperatures increased. At least according to zmag. “ Eines der Ergebnisse: Seit 1950 haben die Schneehöhen und die Dauer der Schneebedeckung in den meisten Regionen abgenommen.” www.zamg.ac.at/cms/de/klima/news/winter-in-oesterreich-vergangenheit-und-zukunft. Yes, this is with large variability due to fluctuations, it that’s what they say.
  • 1 0
 @mitochris: You have used a mainstream source from the top level of politics. Please take a look at the five videos ("Gastbeiträge") on this Youtube channel. Here is the first one of this series: www.youtube.com/watch?v=vpVkyPDm29g
  • 1 0
 @ceecee: Yeah! It's difficult to know what to do when you start looking at the lifecycle of literally everything you do/use.
  • 57 33
 Please, just stop the "Carbon neutral" BS. You flew a bunch of people to Portugal to ride some bikes. Eating Vegan or vegetarian isn't even making a dent in your gross emission. The estimation is ~5kg of CO2 for a kilogram of meat. Typical portion is 250g, so (let's be generous) 1.5 kg of CO2 per meal, fourteen meals a week makes ~20kg of CO2 for the meat per person. Assuming the substitute is completely CO2 neutral (hint: it isn't), the claimed 9.55 tonnes of CO2 for your trip could feed a person for almost NINE years, eating meat twice a day, every single day. Or, to put it in "compensation" terms, require a donation of 26ct Canadian to "offset" the impact from eating meat.

If I was to brag about a 0.2% savings as an engineer, I'd get berated, and rightfully so.
  • 6 2
 Schools in session!
  • 11 0
 Whilst I totally agree with your point, I think it's fair to give them the benefit of the doubt. I know enough people who just were not conscious of the massive difference flying (and transport in general) makes.
If they are really taking this to hearth we will hopefully see them finding a solution to the flying problem (e.g trains inside Europe, only fly overseas once, etc), which is granted not easy but necessary imo.
  • 7 7
 The carbon footprint of the internet itself is huge. So just putting out press releases bragging about how carbon neutral you are is funny in itself.
  • 11 3
 Animal agriculture have a bigger impact than all transportation sector combine, it's one of the leading cause of greenhouse gases causing climate change.
  • 11 0
 @smithcreek: If we follow that logic we should just go back to the stone age... The point is not to abandon everything but to reduce our impact such as to make it sustainable.
  • 8 3
 You can probably find plenty of carbon neutral or carbon negative meat in Portugal. It's all about how the animals are raised and the farmer's practices. Don't believe the game changer's lies
  • 8 1
 @Mntneer: That is very true. Documentaries like this one are part of the problem. They portray the issue as being as simple as not eating meat, but it isn't like that. There are a lot more factors in play, like production, transport, conservation and so on in food alone. Reducing impact on climate is not easy to do but also not easy to get right
  • 5 3
 @Mntneer: game changers lies yeah right meat industry never lied. Like the tobacco Industry in the 60's. 90% of meat we eat comes from factory farming
  • 3 0
 @TransforDerek: If you buy into that stuff.
  • 2 1
 @smithcreek: Buy into what ?
  • 8 7
 @Mntneer: do you seriously think the game changer is the ONLY documentary with that sort of evidence?

Dude, read a book , or two...The meat industry is THE number polluter on earth, doesnt matter how its done, it still has a much larger impact than a plant diet will ever have and its been documented for well over a decade now ...You may not like it, but it doesnt change the facts and saying something is a lie when it isn’t, simply doesn’t make it a lie....I know your dumbass President thinks it works that way but for the rest of educated world, the reality we live it is far different.
  • 1 3
 @neroleeloo: very aggressive for a Canadian. I specifically positi
  • 6 2
 @neroleeloo: specifically posited that you can purchase meat that is raised in a manner that is beneficial to the environment. As an agronomist and member of a farming family, I guarantee that I've read more literature regarding livestock and crops than you have ever heard of.

It's a choice to buy factory farmed meat, and one that I don't support
  • 8 1
 @neroleeloo: @neroleeloo: I'll also add that aggressive monocropping leads to rapid desertification of ecosystems. You can't just say eat plants and everything gets better. Most farmers take short cuts that destroy soil biomes, which results in less water retention I'm the soil, less available nutrients, more fertilizers used, and higher amounts of water waste run off.

The issue is farming practices. Just as cheap meat is destroying the earth, so is cheap produce.

Go on shouting about an orange man that I never voted for and do some of that book learnin' that youre encouraging
  • 4 0
 @Mntneer: bias literature written by the industry... make sense right? Grass fed beef is as bad if not worse than grain fed as it takes longer and use so much land as well. There is no ethical and environmental meat. You can have your own opinion but not your own science.
  • 3 0
 @Mntneer: you need crop to fee the livestock do what your point about monoculture? Animal are not needed it's only the middle man.
  • 3 0
 Between the food and the amount they paid for carbon offset for the transport I’m inclined to say they either don’t yet understand what exactly needs to be done or this is one of the worst concealed attempts at green washing.

That said I’m glad there is a team that is (hopefully) trying to genuinely reduce their impact.
  • 1 1
 @ybsurf: beef and cows are definitely some of the worst When it comes to their impacts and resource use, however there are plenty of other animals and sources of meats that have lower and close to neutral impact, specifically looking at goats and sheep, while still not great they are substantially less impactful than cows

And while it’s not for everyone deer and other ungulates also provide a source of meat with lower impacts, especially if the area they are taken from is already suffering from overcrowding.
  • 1 1
 @ybsurf: you might wanna do some more research because volcanos and forest fires are the leading cause of greenhouse gases.
  • 3 1
 @mhoshal: I said is ONE OF a leading cause not "the" leading cause and also big difference between natural and man made emissions. Btw fire in Amazon are for animal agriculture. You might want to do some research as well.
  • 1 1
 @ybsurf: but it's not even close to a leading cause when you look at the statistics
  • 1 0
 @mhoshal: methane is way more potent than co2.
  • 1 0
 Nough said.
  • 2 1
 @ybsurf: Ya neutral emissions have way more of an impact like millions of times more than any man made emissions. The volcano that just erupted in NZ has put out more greenhouse gas in one day in the atmosphere then we have since the industrial Revolution.
  • 1 2
 If you're so worried about methane then you better stop taking that morning shit lol. Give me a break you're pulling at strings now.
  • 1 3
 @ybsurf: I hate to break it to you too but the rotting vegetation on this planet causes way more methane than farming animals does.
  • 3 0
 @Mntneer: Its the fact that producing meat itself requires large amounts of land and food that could be used instead to grow produce or sequester carbon.
  • 2 1
 @mhoshal: Volcano outgassing is a part of the normal geological CO2 cycle on earth which takes place over hundreds of thousands of years. We are currently above any sort of normal CO2 concentration earth has EVER SEEN by about 40%. Also forest fire rates are increasing due to increased temperatures as a result of CO2 being emitted by transport, farming and all this anthropogenic activity. You should take all the research you have been doing and put it together Razz
  • 1 0
 @mhoshal: Fact'n'shit - got them?
  • 1 2
 @irahudgin: There is so much stupidity and ignorance in what your saying, you should just STFU. There were times in the earths history when CO2 levels were about 5000ppm. And forest fires have nothing to do with temperature.
  • 2 1
 Okay well maybe you can forgive me for talking within the context of 1 million years. Also yes they do? Combined increased average temperatures and drought events = increased forest fires ya ignoramus
  • 2 1
 @SlodownU: yes, but those levels were 500 million years ago and not considered safe for humans. CO2 levels are now higher than at any time in the last 800,000 years.
  • 1 1
 @mitochris: Yes, but it’s not hottest that is been in the last 800,000 years, and during those periods, the CO2 was lower than it is today. Plus total CO2 is only .04% of our atmosphere, and you think it’s causing planetary warming all by itself?
  • 1 1
 @SlodownU: You clearly critically think with 0.04% of your brain and then use the rest to ignore the troves of research and evidence. Go read literally almost any research about this 97% of climate scientists are in agreement that human CO2 emissions are significantly warming the earth. 100% of climate scientists will tell you that yes the 0.04 % proportion of CO2 in our atmosphere contributes to heating the lower portions of our atmosphere significantly and without it we would be in an ice age.
  • 1 1
 @irahudgin: Troves of research and data? What about the FACT that it was warmer at least 3 times in the last 800,000 yrs when CO2 was lower? You apparently have the big brain here, please explain that one to me mr. critical thinker. And the 97% of climate scientists (almost all of them government funded btw) regurgitate the same crap that you and your fellow sheeple lap up, but then again, most propaganda always targets the lowest common denominator (which would be you btw).
  • 1 2
 @irahudgin: But there haven’t been more drought events you dumb a*shole. And if you’re referencing southern Cali, it’s because that part of our country is actually a desert that we turned into a suburban community. Dipshit.
  • 2 0
 @SlodownU: nobody is denying that, but the question is are you prepared for the costs that are associated with a temperature increase that is 8 times faster than any other change? Also, your concentration argument is flawed. if I put 0.04% of arsenic in your food you are dead. You continue to argue that CO2 is not a cause for the warming observed. So what is it? There is no magic cycle that just happens. Global temperatures are consequences of events, such as closer distance to the sun, changes in atmospheric gases, amount of reflection, energy from the sun etc. The global temperature has consequences on the climate. All the science and measurements tell us that human activity has resulted in a 45% increase in atmospheric CO2, which will affect the climate. But if you don’t think the science is correct, then do the following Risk assessment on the following 4 scenarios:
I. We do nothing, and there is no climate change and no adverse/bad consequences
II. We do nothing, but there is climate change with severe consequences
III. We reduce CO2 levels and temperature but there would not have been a climate change anyway
IV. We reduced CO2 levels and temperature, and prevent Climate change.
Only in cases II. and III. did we choose the wrong action. Let’s disregard the predicted costs and likelihood of the consequences of II. versus III. But we cannot differentiate between scenario III. and IV. as there outcomes are identical, which means trying to reduce CO2 and temperature is the only logic action to take, because by taking action we will prevent the consequences all of the time, while by doing nothing, we only achieve this in 50% of the scenarios.
  • 2 1
 @mitochris: I’m not going to debate this with you because it will go around in circles for ever. Nothing in nature ever stays constant, including the climate. Temps are either going up or down. Same with CO2. There is largely ignored research (since it doesn’t fit the narrative) that CO2 rises as a result of temperature increase, not as the cause. Temps have been going up and down since the Earth was formed. What exactly will be the cost? Things will die, new life will evolve, the way it always has. What you see around you now will not be the same in the future, this is just a snapshot in time. Just because humans evolved does not mean the Earth now stays as is forever. And if I put .04% of anything other than what’s supposed in your blood in there, it’s not good for you. And BTW, you exhale about 40,000ppm of CO2 with every breath, so you’d better come up with a better analogy.
  • 3 0
 @SlodownU: I know it is exhausting, and we seem to have this discussion each time the topic comes up on PB, but to be clear, I am not arguing that climates don’t change. They do, and it is a consequence of an event that happened prior to the change. The current and near-future change is to a large part a consequence of human behaviour, if you disagree with me there, then please tell me what is causing it, and what data supports your argument. Usually these changes, especially are changes, are slow, taking hundreds to thousands of years. The rate of the current change is a lot faster than ever seen before, and it questions that ecosystems can adapt quickly enough. Now, in the long run, this is of very little consequence, but I do not care about the planet in 10,000 years, nor in 1000. However, I have an interest that my children and their children inherit a planet that is not riddled with problems caused by the current generation. You ask what the costs of an increased global temperature would be? I think this has been introduced to exhaustion often enough, but just consider this. During the last ice age there were hundreds of meters of ice on parts of land, which has no ice now. The temperature then was around 5°C less than now. It is predicted that if we do not alter our behaviour, temperatures will be 5°C more than now in 100 years. You can imagine what changes that might lead to, in comparison. You claim that data/research is ignored on the basis of “not fitting the narrative” is scientific misconduct and that’s not how science works. An I mean scientific work, not reporting by news agencies. There will always be good and bad science but in the end, the good science prevails. And yes, I exhale CO2, but this comes from carbon fixation that took place during my life-time, most likely during the same year that I exhale it. It is not carbon that was sequestered million of years ago. Thats the difference.
  • 1 4
 @mitochris: I happen to know a lot about science, and the entire premise that an increase in CO2 raises temperature is flawed, the data doesn’t support it. You can keep believing it, but when I look at the data it does not support it. You can manipulate time scales and intervals to make things look however you want, but it was still warmer when CO2 was 100ppm less. I’ve defended 2 thesis’s, written peer reviewed journals, and I know what a burden of scientific proof looks like. A bunch to scientists all believing in a flawed premise does not make it correct. I don’t question your belief, your entitled to your opinion, but based on what you’ve written your understanding of biology and chemistry is basic, and all the “scientists” perpetuating this crap are taking advantage of you and many like you, which actually pisses me of. Eventually it will piss you off too.
  • 5 0
 @SlodownU: I’m am rather happy with my science, thank you very much. If you question that CO2 is a greenhouse gas, then you Are mistaken. It’s a triatomic molecule, that just like water and methane, can absorb energy at certain wavelengths. Without it, the planet would be a lot colder. Now if you meant that an increase in CO2 levels will not have an effect on the greenhouse effect, because the absorbable energy by CO2 is already maxed out/saturated in the atmosphere, then this is something else. I am not physicist, granted, so I will believe those that say that even doubling of CO2 levels would only lead to a minor heat increase in the upper layers of the atmosphere. Although, I do think that this model seems to assume a static condition and does not seem to consider that by increasing the size of the saturation layer will trap more heat, and the increased eat will allow increased trapping, but of course this can’t be Linear and more research is required. However, science is a process of elimination and until we have eliminated CO2 and not just just the fact that we release heat, then it is the best we have. But as usual, the goal post is being moved from there is no global warming, to there is, it it is not CO2.and I don’t get pissed off by a scientist that is testing a hypothesis.
  • 20 3
 It may not all be perfect but its a start and even if it shames other bike companies and teams into better practices then its a good thing. Taking some leadership isnt the same as greenwashing. I say well done to Polygon and keep trying harder, there is more you can do and a lot more other teams can do. Might be nice to see the race teams getting trains between European races rather than flights.
  • 54 35
 Fly to Spain to launch CO2 reduction campaign. Brilliant!
  • 5 5
 Many of them fly from Australia (!) to Spain.
  • 43 0
 Good point, But Portugal is most definitely not in Spain.. it's a country,as Spain is
  • 12 0
 Portugal é um país meu burro!!!
  • 33 5
 Stay in school, @Ryanfitz. Portugal is one if the oldest countries in the world. Know your geography.
  • 11 2
 @Ryanfitz81 they didn't fly to Portugal to launch the campaign. They went to train as a team and took the opportunity to implement the plans they had been developing to reduce the environmental impact of the event.

Or should they all just jump on Zwift?
  • 7 0
 @nozes: original article title said Spain champ. PB corrected since
  • 7 3
 @Ryanfitz81: Didn't know that. Sorry for the triggered reply.
  • 3 1
 @jjhobbs: I see the England/Portugal alliance is still going strong.
  • 1 0
 @excavator666: swift now offering MTB riding, do they?????‍♂️????
  • 2 0
 @gillyske: I'm actually Welsh! But, I do love the place.. Portugal is amazing
  • 18 6
 Thank you to everyone who supports us!
As we mentioned when we first launch this new goal, we know that fundamentally, a race team can’t be without any environmental impact.
Also it’s good to keep in mind that we are a private team which means we are independent from our sponsors, this is why we are focusing on reducing and offsetting the emissions of our team travels and activities and not the whole bike production.
We are not pretending to be saving the world, we are not perfect, we just want to start changing things to reduce and offset our CO2 emissions and hopefully inspire more people to do something about it.
However, we might be missing something, so we are curious and we would like to know what is wrong with not buying any single-use plastic water bottles, reducing our meat consumption and giving money to renewable energy initiatives …. ?
  • 4 0
 Good on you guys @urteam Keep up the fine work and open thought.....great to see!
  • 2 0
 You got my support for efforts to reduce emissions and pollutions but talking carbon neutrality is a little misleading and could definitely be interpreted as PR stunt bs
  • 2 1
 @irahudgin: Thanks for the support, it's true that carbon neutrality is something that is all relative but at least the co2 offset gives us a tangible goal to work toward rather than the classic let's do our best.
It's also true that it can be looked as a PR stunt but the reason why we started doing something is because other companies, athletes, producers, citizens started talking about it. Hopefully in the future talking about improvement without being perfect will be less polarizing.
  • 2 0
 OK, great inititiative. Maybe it can get better. Probably. Let me just throw some things out there. I don't know where everybody on the team had to come from but was the training camp location specifically selected to minimize the total flight distance? If not, that's where I'd start. How long beforehand was the location chosen? Could some of the equipment have been shipped by train or boat even if the people had to fly?
Also, how well did you research the compensation goals? There's a lot out there that aren't really compensating but go to projects that would have gotten funded anyway etc. Not saying that this is the case here, I didn't check, just asking whether you did.
The water you put into the container, was it tap water? If you filled it from large bottles bought at the store the savings could be better if you used tap.
That truck you use for shuttling I see in the picture is electric I assume?
Did you specifically choose your lodgings to be CO2 neutral? That's probably a big one, building and heating (oar cooling) are a big chunk of energy usage.
Take only cold showers? There must be better ideas still.
  • 7 0
 @ak-77: Hey! My name is Anne-Fred and I work with the UR Team. Thank you for your feedback, I've been working on this project of the team for a little while and I hope I can clarify a few things.
For this trip, we had someone coming from the US, one from Australia and 4 other people in Europe. So Portugal ended up being quite central for everybody involved, so this location was the best for overall travel distance and also as a bonus cost.
Shipping the equipment was not possible due too tight timeline.
Since we did our first launch I’ve been communicating with a lot of people, especially from Gold Standard and Climate Care and I made sure that the money we put into projects would be the most efficient possible. The portfolio that Climate Care put together is made to help smaller emitters do a difference.
Even if we are emitting more than average, we are still considered as a small emitter and if we had gone about giving into a project that we found online, the impact would have been inexistent. If you want more details, check Climate Care out!
As for the water tank, yes we filled it with tap water, otherwise it would totally defeat the purpose!
We did calculate the mileage done with that truck and it was part of our offsetting.
As for accomodation in November in Lousã for a group like ours, the options are quite limited but we were happily surprise to that our accomodation had full recycling in place.
We have to keep in mind that we are still a racing team and that our goal is to do the best performance so we don’t plan on canceling test camp but we plan on making them more efficient and then offset what we can’t realistically change.
  • 2 0
 @urteam: Hi Anne-Fred, great to see you are doing what you can, given the boundary conditions. Keep up the good work. There is a lot of harsh criticism here but I don't blame people for being sceptical since there's a lot of greenwashing going on these days. And making a large impact without making real sacrifices is often not possible.
  • 1 0
 There is something wrong with flying and planting trees in return, CO2 is still released in the atmosphere:

www.theverge.com/2019/12/6/20998898/carbon-markets-climate-change-global-action-madrid-united-nations-world-leaders-cop25

"De Oro, who lives in Guam and is attending the summit in Madrid, points to islands in the Pacific being threatened by more superstorms, rising sea levels gobbling up entire islands, and more acidic oceans harming sea life. “Carbon markets and offsets are false solutions and we really want real solutions,” she says."
  • 1 0
 @zoobab2: There is maybe no easy solution for their problem. We have less superstorms in the last years, so I think CO2 is not what causes superstorms. I think superstorms are normal and not related to human activities. Plate shifting and other events can also rise a local sea level, that's a normal event. There is no life without risk. This would not be the first fake story related to sea levels. Ultimately one can fool people in every field, and the media did this several times before.
  • 13 5
 All these as*holes in the comments on their high horses are the reason more change doesn’t happen. Lets just bash everything because why not?! Jesus Christ at least they are trying to make a change. “oH tHey fLew tO sPaiN” how the hell else are they supposed to do to get there travel by horse and trailer? Sure it isn’t perfect but at least they are doing something. So all of you with your stats and hate can shove it where the sun doesn’t shine
  • 3 6
 There were times in the last 800,000 years where the temperature was warmer, and the C02 level was much lower. Go back further, and there is no correlation between C02 and temperature. Not to mention, focusing on one factor (C02) in a complex dynamic system is scientifically flawed. Life on this planet also evolved to withstand wide temperature fluctuations, or there would be no life period. Warming or cooling, life will go on. We are in a natural cycle that we can’t effect. We should for sure reduce pollution, deforestation, change land use to stop habitat loss, use less plastic so that it doesn’t clog up our waterways, and stop illegal dumping, but thinking that we can alter natural planetary cycles is just pure human hubris.
  • 2 2
 Yes it's good to do something good for our environment, but it's also important to do the right things. To reduce CO2 is maybe the wrong direction because we maybe have no CO2 problem. If you prefer to pay taxes for the fat cats instead of solving real problems you can just believe it, so you can save a lot time of research. There are some well respected people in the world, who think the IPPC is not made for unprejudiced research and science. They have no voice because they think the IPCC serves only one purpose, they think the IPPC is made only to deliver us one result: The proof for man made climate change ! We have to believe it and are not really allowed to discuss that anymore. Now, they have created a result, the absolute truth, a religion ! It's a very expensive religion and we all have to follow and pay for it.
  • 4 0
 @fossydh: Science. Have you read the scientific papers & understood them correctly?

What you are saying is the subject matter experts, subjected to unending peer review are all wrong?

Please - read the fifth IPCC report in full & observe conclusions based on science:

www.ipcc.ch/site/assets/uploads/2018/02/SYR_AR5_FINAL_full.pdf

Chemistry & physics isn't political or subjective or emotional.
  • 1 4
 @hifiandmtb: Real science is not based on a whole buch of different computer models. You can not model such a complex thing like clima and get the truth as a result. The scientists of the IPCC are not working independently. Also do not forget #climagate, where Hackers exposed the e-mails of IPCC members to show the world how they manipulate us. The IPCC has hundreds of paid journalists while other independent scientists have no public voice. Mann, a man who hide his hockeystick input data ?
  • 4 0
 @fossydh
1. Yes you can, who told you otherwise?
2. They are working independently, trying to disprove results - it’s called the scientific method
3. Debunked, read further into what happened there
4. Not true, everyone gets a voice in the media & on the internet which makes this shit show happen
5. Sorry to hear that, he worth listening to
  • 1 1
 @hifiandmtb:
1. The more models, the more different results but it will never be possible to make a realistic model of such a complex thing. Too many unpredictable factors and to many unknown factors.
2. Its not really independent when you get your money from the same source.
3. The scandal was big, they tried to hide it from the public. Assange is still in jail and normal people don't care if he would die. He has no voice, no internet !
4. The IPCC has hundreds of journalists, real independent (unpaid) science do not have that power to cover up impossible things like the fact that there no complete data exists to calculate an earth middle temperature. This is not possible, but the Media does not stop with that bullshit, they still want us to believe that.
5. If you want to get sure that you can trust a computer program, it have to be open source. If you want trust computer models, you need the input data and the algorithms.
  • 1 0
 @fossydh: can you elaborate in what way the “hockey stick” graph is wrong? Every single criticism of the original data has been shown to be incorrect or insignificant. It seems to be more that for some reason, some people rather want to agree with bad science then listen to the criticism. It seems that publications or claims made to dispute the original Mann et al Nature paper in 1998 were either false or not peer-reviewed and later refuted. I found no sound information that the original published data was so flawed that the conclusions were incorrect. Where does your criticism come from? What made you think that? The original data and codes used for the Mann paper were publicly available since 2000, and the climate gate is unsubstantiated.
  • 1 0
 @mitochris: There are a enough people out there who expose the hockeystick as lie. If you can use search filters, you can find those videos alone. The most interesting point is how they collect their data. There are so many independent information but you have to take the time. I've find a lot of stuff in german. We have a lot of jobs in the car industry, maybe it is a bigger topic here but you can find enough information everywhere. I invested very much time in my own research but always try to avoid political sites like Wikipedia, News-Media-Sites or big tax paid Organizations. Believe nothing, stay critical, make your own research and conclusions. The best is to take the time for uncutted talks or interviews. It needs patience to do this, nowadays the most are not able to watch an interview longer than five minutes.
  • 13 2
 That's cool - and without taking it to extremes.
  • 9 2
 Nice one guys! Really good to see a team making real efforts. I don't get why people are hating on it. So what if it doesn't reduce it by as much as made out. The main thing is it's being reduced so how can you realistically be upset up that? Plus this is just the beginning. I bet come Race season they have all sorts of other methods to help and hopefully we will see other teams follow suit and maybe it'll will spread more outside of the sport also.
  • 8 1
 I everyone could do their bit instead of shitting on people that are vocal about it, the world would be in a better shape! Do what you want but make something better, instead of making this commenting sections worse!
  • 13 10
 Please, Polygon - look into carbon offset schemes for what they really are:

www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/licence-pollute-sham-carbon-offsetting-20873564.amp

Have a read of this:

www.carbonbrief.org/analysis-why-the-ipcc-1-5c-report-expanded-the-carbon-budget

Particularly:

"...What is clear is that very rapid emission reductions coupled with large-scale deployment of negative emissions are needed if the world wants to have any chance of limiting warming to 1.5C..."

Sorry to burst your bubble.
  • 37 0
 I agree that carbon offsets are not to be taken as a silver bullet. They usually don't entirely cancel-out the global warming impact they claim to offset (largely because releasing a ton of CO2 now does more damage than preventing the release of a ton over the next few years or decades).

www.youtube.com/watch?v=hhpTr_ZJ4Gk

However, I think we have to be careful not to shout down those who strive to reduce their impact for being "hypocrites", while ignoring the vast majority who do nothing. It's like guilt-tripping vegetarians for not being vegan while most of us continue to eat meat.

It's pretty much impossible to live a normal life without impacting the environment, but we should applaud those who search for ways to get closer to that goal.
  • 28 0
 Look, all that sneering its-a-drop-in-the-ocean talk (you get nothing else from the Mirror) does is to sanction people continuing to fly, buy monster trucks, and consume products and animals with no regard to its impact. Polygon getting off their asses and finding ways to make a difference gets the public thinking, other teams thinking, event organizers thinking, manufacturers thinking, organizing bodies thinking.

Props to Polygon for taking a stand.
  • 7 0
 @hifiandmtb: There aren't really a great deal of facts in the Mirror article, I think they just looked at the REDDwatch website. I just did a really quick search of the April Salumei project and it doesn't look like the best project, a lot of avoided deforestation projects have issues hence why there are so many cheap credits from these projects getting included into CORSIA, that doesn't mean that every project funded through carbon offsetting is bad though, Polygon UR have chosen to use a reputable provider in ClimateCare. I don't think anyone apart from maybe the airline industry is saying that offsetting is the solution, offsetting should be the very last action that a business/individual takes. Firstly you need to take action to align activities with a 1.5 degree target and can then look to offset any unavoidable emissions. It would be pretty remarkable if in the first year of working to reduce their impact Polygon UR were able to achieve a 1.5 degree target but they have started the process and mentioned other interventions in the article that although small will play a part. They have also been transparent with the current level of emissions so now have a baseline to improve upon for next camp and have shared that figure so can be held to account. I wouldn't rip into an organisation that is at the early stages of trying to reduce their impact and doing this transparently.
  • 5 0
 Did you just link a daily mirror article as a serious reference?
  • 4 0
 @hifiandmtb Fair point with regards to what the off setting, but please don't ever quote anything from the mirror, only thing that paper is good for is wiping your a*se.
  • 2 0
 To those adverse to me quoting the Mirror, I used it as brief summary material to make my point.

Happy for you to Google other sources, but I find providing too much information turns people off.

Maybe read the second Carbon Brief dot org analysis to get a bigger picture of the problem at hand?

The *only* way we are going to solve CC is to immediately ration all CO2 emissions - and I'm afraid this means eliminating all unnecessary travel. Yep - our beloved sports will need to cease being.

I'm not sure I'm ready for this yet, but science tells us this is the solution we need to implement.

CO2 offset schemes make things worse as they steepen the curve needed to get to 50% emissions by 2030. Business as usual cannot continue.
  • 6 3
 Forests are already suffering from extreme events, like hight number of days of drought, like we had this July.

They are also threatened by non-freezing winters, where the "vermine" is not killed.

Trees like beech are already dying.

And planting other trees in "compensation" for your flights won't help.

Look at yourself in the mirror, you are consuming too much, and you are pushing others to do the same.
  • 3 0
 I think the idea is good! However - the CO2-Emissions for flights seem low. One flight from Australia to Europe and back should result in roughly 8-10tons of CO2 per passenger! Compared to the flights the plastic water bottles are peanuts. However - awareness is a start. I am curious how they continue their idea!
  • 3 0
 Kudos to Polygon for accepting the problem that we all face as a civilization and committing to do what they can to help mitigate their contributions! The world would be a better place if we all learned from their good example and made similar changes in our lifestyle. Small, incremental changes add up to large effects. I am Pro planet earth!
  • 7 1
 Great initiative! Awesome to see them taking the first steps
  • 2 0
 Even after all those years i still struggle to really believe how stupid/ignorant/uneducated or simply lazy the big parts of the bike scene is.

Yes there actually are more important things happening in the world than two wheels clamped on some frame.
  • 1 0
 on a sidenote: the whole racing circus is never going to be environmental friendly. Should that mean we should ban racing?

Props to Polygon UR to at least trying to be more responsible. It's already more than most keyboard warriors would commit to do.
  • 2 0
 @xkriegerx: From Disobey Cyclists: "We need cyclists that resist the consumption and competition spiral. Cyclists that disobey as soon as they don’t find a point on following a training plan, buying a new bike, missing a key moment with a loved one, or keeping up a fast pace when others are being left behind and need help to move on." medium.com/@RZapataL/disobey-cycling-dd1ea46258e0
  • 4 3
 @fotop @fossydh totally agree, and I will add: "the day of the final judgment will come not at once but gradually as humanity simmers in hell that they themselves will create on their non-round planet earth"
Letter of Brian Cohen, 2748965#44845#7
  • 5 1
 If our planet experiences a continuaul aggregate loss of forestation, none of co2 reduction schemes matter.
  • 3 1
 Do you know animal agriculture is a leading cause of deforestation
  • 7 0
 @m3000: Soya for feeding the animals we eat
  • 2 0
 @m3000: like @m3000 said 90% of world's soy is fed to livestock.
  • 1 0
 They should have used land transport or an airline that is already carbon offsetting. Like EasyJet does.
Long haul flights are particularly bad and a ferry would take some amount of time.

Having just been to China, they eat lots of meat, but not really much beef, they also eat all of the animal and not just the western desirable bits. Would have been good to hear that the team followed a more eastern diet which is more sustainable.

It would be far better if they trained at home and sent data back to head office. That way they would have reduced the footprint for the support staff, travel, some foods etc.

Every little bit helps and I guess writing an article based on paying $127 is a start!!!! The rest is just normal life for many people. (I would chose easyjet to fly with as they carbon offset already).
  • 1 0
 I tried to Google to see how to drive from Australia to Portugal but for some reason it says "Sorry, we could not calculate driving directions..."

All kidding aside, using ground transport as much as is reasonable makes sense, but not possible all the time for an international race team.
  • 1 0
 @Chris97a: I suppose a question is... why go from Aus to Portugal. Yes maybe the tracks, but surely NZ would be close enough and relatable.
Modern world data works remotely. Smile
Even in R&D and engineering.
  • 1 0
 @betsie:
Not everyone on the team is from Australia.
  • 1 0
 @Chris97a: well, test in different locations.
Its not rocket science. Its just data gathering.
My last work tests happened in India, China, Scotland all at the same time. I coordinated them all, yes we use a design verification test plan as we as running parallel characterization.
We normally get our test equipment in Germany and any RF testing in Spain.

Engineering and test can be done remotely. Just need a wee plan and protocol to follow. xxx
  • 1 0
 @betsie:
I think you are just goofing around, but I don't think that it would be more efficient to ship the team to each riders location. Or are you suggesting that they should just go ride wherever they are are and just data log by themselves, which isn't really the same thing as a team camp.
  • 1 0
 @Chris97a:
This is about being green, part of that is removing the necessary to haves and doing the must haves. If you are travelling across the world, you need to recover from jetlag so its counter productive to training.
Support can be provided remotely.

Not joking, if I travelled to every engineeting test I run I would be doing a lot of travelling, but we do most things remotely.
  • 8 3
 Polygon just solved climate change guys.
  • 2 1
 This is a really great thing you are doing, thank you for taking the time to document and share with us! I am surprised by the negativity of the comment section here but wish you well on keeping this up for the rest of the season.
  • 4 1
 The article title says Spain, but the article content is Portugal...I'm confused. I guess Portugal it is.
  • 6 0
 That's how Portugal is normally put on the map by our friends from the other side of the pond, now coming in from NZ, that's a different story. We'll have to update our world map the send list (the 1143 version would be ok),
  • 12 0
 "I thought europe was a country?"
  • 2 0
 @urteam take some notes!
  • 2 0
 @shr3d: isn't europe the capital of russia?
  • 2 0
 @shr3d: no,its an empire
  • 3 0
 New Zealand is in Australia though, right?
  • 2 0
 @Boldfish: Australia? I thought Austria!
  • 2 0
 @mitochris: Australia? Austria? are they not the same place?
  • 3 0
 @Dropthedebt: Oh, I wouldn't know. Im obviously from Switzerland.
  • 2 0
 @mitochris: Of course Switzerland, I should have know from your flag. That's next door to Mozambique if I remember correctly.
  • 2 0
 Each car pumps out about four tonnes of CO2 each year. There is your simple answer. Ditch the car. Better yet ditch the 6000 pound truck that carries your 30 pound bike.
  • 1 0
 I am carless, going to enduro events with the train.
  • 3 1
 Hallo, Bootles from Klean Kanteen is Better. No Plastik - only Steel. For live Long.
  • 2 0
 @shr3d: and of course the steel process is eco-friendly
  • 2 0
 @Dropthedebt:
Pretty eco friendly as it is one of the easier materials to recycle.
  • 1 0
 @Chris97a: For sure it's an easier recyclable material but the initial manufacturing process of ore mining and production is far from eco-friendly. tup
  • 2 0
 Is a step in the right direction, but could have a greater impact by using Aluminium in stead of carbon frames!
  • 4 1
 How about we all contribute by not buying a new bike for at least 4 years?
  • 2 2
 Polygon could contribute better by making sustainable bamboo downhill bikes. Carbon ones cannot be recycled and are harmful to the environment....oh wait, the company just seeks to make a profit by mentally bonding with the people buying the eco-friendly line of thought...
  • 2 0
 Paying a company to "neutralize CO2" is a joke. But other than that its a great initiative.
  • 2 0
 300+ trees planted by me last week. What are the rest of you who whine actually doing?
  • 2 0
 120 $ to offset 9 people goind from Australia to Portugal ? The CO2 market value really is a joke
  • 1 0
 No, the joke is more that there is a market for CO2. We're all screwed. But i do not want to blame the Polygon UR Team, they are nice people who do really cool stuff. We should support them for that.
  • 2 0
 Remember to pee/poo before you get on the plane.
  • 2 2
 Awesome. Now if all bike companies did this it would save the world. Glad to see such a responsible company doing the right thing and not just pulling marketing bs. Right?
  • 2 0
 The cow they drove by, blew a fart and negated the whole benefit.
  • 2 0
 Good job Polygon....keep it up!
  • 1 0
 You need to hold in your farts as well, that helps and you'll feel great about yourself knowing that you've done your part.
  • 2 0
 I read that farts prevent cancer, so now I'm torn about what to do.
  • 2 0
 Carbon neutral or not, kits are still fugly there.
  • 1 0
 So is carbon neutral the corporate version of vegans. They have to make sure you know about it.
  • 2 0
 It's got too start somewhere! Good on team Polygon!
  • 12 12
 times have changed....when I was younger there was New World Disorder....now there is New World B*llsh*t...
  • 1 0
 maybe UR team use the program, one training camp one tree
  • 5 3
 Go vegan
  • 2 2
 Just think in a thousand years team ur will have saved about 1% of what the volcano in NZ just spewed out.
  • 2 1
 Kill yourself, then you won't consume anything.
  • 2 3
 Well done guys, this is great initiative!
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