Car Free Tuesday: green transportation with a golden tip!

Eduard Schaepman
14 Jun 2018

Car Free Tuesday: green transportation with a golden tip!

by Eduard Schaepman, on 14 Jun 2018

Have you noticed anything last Tuesday on the way to your office? Where there less cars on the road? Or did you take the bicycle early in the morning of Carless Tuesday to the bus stop? The project was initiated by Enexis Group, which is a provider of sustainable energy, and the ball has slowly started rolling nationwide. Since are inspired by the nomadic tribes, who have to deal with the consequences of CO2 emissions on a daily basis, we were very happy to participate. Because those nomads have the most sustainable transport of all of us; the travel on horseback, or on foot with their herds across national borders, and we should learn from them.

All members of the Tribes family chose a sustainable alternative; one took the train, the other the bicycle, well, you understand what I mean. In any case, we all left the car and scooter at home. It was the conversation of the day, and everyone tried to get to the office in a creative and sustainable way. This has resulted in a lot of fun videos of all team members (check our compilation!). My experience: A Car Free Tuesday is not only good for the environment, good for your health (walking or cycling to the bus, to the train or immediately to work), and it can also result in very good advice.

Since the real Car Free Tuesday is filled with meetings for which I have to be in time, I wanted to make sure that public transport would bring me everywhere seamlessly (and the more car-free days, the better of course, because that’s what this initiative is all about. So, on Wednesday afternoon I made a tour through the Tribes locations in Amsterdam by public transport.

After almost 5 kilometers of cycling, I was waiting for the bus to Amsterdam Amstel, when a young mother with a little boy walked towards the bus. I assume that the mother was exploring her digital timeline, given the speed with which she swept on her mobile phone. The little guy took a seat in the bus next to his mother, diagonally opposite me.

He was secretly glancing at me, so I started a conversation. He told me that his name was Thomas, that he was 6 years old (just like Charlie), and had more fun traveling by train than by bus (I used to feel the same at his age). But he’s planning to only travel by car when he’s older, because 'grown-ups do that when they are old'. He got that glimpse in his eyes that I recognize from Charlie when he realizes that he has done something that is actually not that polite. ‘It's only good if those people also take the bus; that's better for the environment', I said, and I told him about car-free days, CO2 reduction and our impact on the earth. I immediately - automatically - made a jump to Tribes, and explained to him how Survival International, the foundation we support, is committed to minimizing the impact we have on the nomadic tribes. 

Thomas agreed that we should support the tribes and asked me how we are doing that.  ‘We're selling small books, and we're giving the money to Survival International’, I told him. I saw him looking with amazement at his mother, then at her phone and then he looked at me again: ‘But why don't you just ask for it on Facebook?’ 

Long live car-free days; it’s good for the environment, good for the exercise and good for golden tips. I'm going to take the bus more often!

Topics:Eduard Schaepman