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Monday, March 26, 2007
 Bike Florida 2007 
We're back from a trip to Florida. It was an opportunity to check on Mom who is undergoing chemotherapy, and to ride Bike Florida. This was our third year doing the ride. It's a well-organized ride on relatively flat terrain that suits our recumbent tandem, the Barcroft Columbia. We drove down with the bike on the roof and spent a week in the sun riding from DeLand, Florida in the north central part of the state, to Flagler Beach, Daytona Beach, New Smyrna Beach, and back to DeLand. The photo on the right was taken by me as we rode along the Daytona Beach amidst the many kids down for spring break.

There were only about 700 cyclists on the ride which made for a manageable crowd. The lines were short and there was plenty of food, including some delicious grapefruit and oranges sliced up at each rest stop. The meals were included, and those that we ate were some of the best large-group bike tour food we've had. The weather was nearly perfect, cool in the morning and in the high 60's, low 70's during the day. I hope to compile a trip report in the next couple of weeks.

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Sunday, March 04, 2007
 My Dot-Green Future 
My Dot-Green Future Is Finally Arriving is an article by Bruce Sterling in today's Post about the need for a sustainable economic future, and that the web is leading the way, including his venture in green design, Viridian Design.
In 1998, I had it figured that the dot-com boom would become a dot-green boom. It took a while for others to get it. Some still don't. They think I'm joking. They are still used to thinking of greenness as being "counter" and "alternative" -- they don't understand that 21st-century green is and must be about everything -- the works. Sustainability is comprehensive. That which is not sustainable doesn't go on. Glamorous green. I preached that stuff for years. I don't have to preach it anymore, because it couldn't be any louder. Green will never get any sexier than it is in 2007. Because, after this, brown will start going away.
There is a revolution underway in economic thinking. In 2005 I mentioned the concept called “negative externalities”, that bad things happen when we produce goods, but there is not cost associated with them. It seemed so obvious how wrong that was and that to fix the problem we must incorporate those negative externalities into the cost of doing business. It seems that we're now in the midst of a great economic revolution in which that is starting to happen. Also in the Post is the article When Being Green Puts You in the Black. Two equity firms have purchased TXU, and energy firm that was investing heavily in coal plants. Instead the new owners will reduce those investments and put more money into solar and wind power and conservation.
This deal shows that we are in the midst of a revolution. Environmental progress no longer depends on hundreds of bureaucrats at the Environmental Protection Agency mandating what piece of pollution-control equipment will be on each smokestack. Government must continue to set standards. But the burden of innovation and technology development will shift to the private sector.

Moving from "command and control" regulations to a market approach to environmental protection means that there will be real costs for pollution -- including a price to be paid for greenhouse-gas emissions -- for every business. But these costs sharpen the economic incentives for pollution control research and development, and create big opportunities for companies that come up with solutions for society's environmental problems.

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Saturday, March 03, 2007
 Lifetimes With Fire 
That's the title of an article by the poet Gary Snyder in this month's Sierra magazine. He lives in the Sierra Nevada foothills on land that he settled in 1970. He is practicing what he preaches; learning about the land and region in which he lives and making it a better place. It's easy to think that one day we'll find the place of our dreams, which is usually elsewhere. In the meantime we live our lives without really caring for the place we know best and where we spend our time, right here, right now. I look forward to reading Gary's new book of essays in which the above article appears, Back on the Fire.

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Friday, March 02, 2007
 Tour de Georgia and U.S. Open Cycling Championships in doubt 
Virginia is scheduled to be the sight of a new pro cycling race, the U.S. Open Cycling Championships, from Williamsburg to Richmond, on Saturday, April 7. The Tour de Georgia is scheduled for April 16-22. Both are in jeopardy because of lack of sponsors. Not a good sign for bicycle racing in the U.S. According to the Rome News, the organizers of the Tour de Georgia are hopeful they can find $1M in sponsorship money.

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 Win the lottery, buy $65,000 worth of bikes 
Brad Duke, 34, a manager for five Gold's Gym franchises in Idaho, won $85 million in the Powerball lottery. He's one of the few smart lottery winners, investing most of his money in low-risk investements. His spulrge was spending $65,000 on new bicycles, including a $12,000 BMC road bike. [hat tip to Kottke.]

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Thursday, March 01, 2007
 Levi Leipheimer wins the Tour of California 
Levi Leipheimer of the Discovery Channel team won the Tour of California.
"Levi led from start to finish," McCartney commented, "but there was a lot of sweat left on the road, and a little bit of blood."
The bad news is that George Hincapie broke a bone in his left forearm and will miss most of the Spring classics, his specialty. Another Discovery Channel rider, Jason McCartney, finished second overall.

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 Ullrich retires 
Jan Ullrich announced his retirement from professional bicycle racing on Monday.

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