The Challenge

The Big Green Commute is a week-long commuting challenge hosted by ZGF each May that challenges commuters in the Washington, DC region to Go To Work, Make a Difference. The competition was founded on the tenets that (A) climate change is real and poses a catastrophic threat to our planet and (B) change can be affected at a personal and community level. The competition—which coincides with Bike to Work Week—incentivizes commutes via walking and biking but also rewards participants for carpooling, taking public transportation, or driving electric vehicles, recognizing that a self-propelled commute is not possible for everyone.

Transportation accounts for over 33% of the United States’ CO2 emissions according to data provided by the World Bank, and the EPA ranks the United States as the world’s second highest carbon emitter after China. Despite DC’s LEED Platinum status and an estimated 10% decline in the percentage of DC-region commuters who drive alone to work in the last decade, the DC region still shares significant responsibility for transportation carbon emissions. Driving continues to be the major mode in which DC-region commuters get to work, and DC-region commuters endure the 2nd-longest average commute in America according to US census data, spending an average of 32.2 minutes on a one-way commute to get to and from work.

By engaging our friends, colleagues, and community in a fun, week-long challenge, our goal is to advocate for a healthier, greener society and to inspire behavioral change. Join us in the 2018 Big Green Commute to compete to be recognized as Greenest of Them All while taking action and making a difference!