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  • September Monthly FCBC Board Meeting and Newsletter

September Monthly FCBC Board Meeting and Newsletter

  • Thursday, September 17, 2020
  • 7:30 PM - 8:30 PM
  • Zoom

Next Board Meeting

The next Board meeting is scheduled for Thursday, September 17 at 7:30 pm via Zoom.  Topics include the continuing efforts for Bike Match and the upcoming educational events being done in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council Central California.  Everyone is welcome to join the web conference.  If you would like to participate, please send an email to info@fresnobike.org, and the login information and call-in number will be sent to you.

September FCBC Newsletter

Bicycling and Air Quality

In general, bicycling does wonders for physical and mental health.  However, the Central Valley is not known for having good air.  For most people, the benefits of bicycling outweigh the concerns of the less than ideal air quality.  This summer the Central Valley has experienced extraordinarily poor air quality due to wildfires.  Last month smoke from the wildfires in the Bay Area blanketed the Central Valley, and more recently, the devastating Creek Fire in the Shaver Lake area smothered the valley with unhealthy air.

The constituents in air pollution include carbon monoxide (CO), nitrogen oxides (NO and NO2), hydrocarbons (HC), ground-level ozone (O3), and particulate matter (PM2.5).  PM2.5 measures fine particulate matter 2.5 microns or less.  These particles cause the haziness in the sky, and they are the main concern of wildfire smoke.  The particles enter the respiratory tract and lodge in the lungs and can cause irritation to the eyes, nose, throat, and lungs.  They can worsen medical conditions such as asthma and heart disease and can cause long-term damage.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) developed the Air Quality Index (AQI), which has a range of 0 to 500, with a lower score being better.  The AQI measures five pollutants regulated by the Clean Air Act.  Daily air quality forecasts can be found on the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District website or the U.S. EPA AirNow website.  It’s a good idea to check the air quality to determine how long and strenuous you can ride your bike or do any other outdoor activity.

N95 masks do filter PM2.5 particles.  However, these masks are not widely available now and should be reserved for health professionals and emergency first responders.  The masks also need to fit properly to function as designed.  Any facial hair will prevent the needed snug fit.  Cotton masks have been found to be ineffective in filtering PM2.5 particles.

Bike to Work Day is September 22

National Bike to Work Week is September 21 to 27, and Bike to Work Day is Tuesday, September 22, rescheduled from May 15.  The first Bike to Work Day Corporate Challenge in Fresno occurred in 2006.  There are friendly rivalries between businesses and organizations to get the crown for most miles ridden for various size categories.  This year, with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the Corporate Challenge has been given a rest to discourage large gatherings of people.  Bike to Work Day still remains a great way to encourage friends and coworkers to try bicycling to work just once, and it could be the start of a fun and healthy habit.

As Bike to Work Day this year coincides with World Car-Free Day, try to do all of your trips on that day by non-motorized means.  Get on your bike or scooter, take the bus, or walk to all your destinations.

Have a comment or suggestion?  Contact us at info@fresnobike.org.

Fresno County Bicycle Coalition

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