After more than three months on the road and more than 4,200 miles logged on the bicycle, Sunnyvale resident Tim Oey is nearing the end of his journey.
“We all live in a spaceship called planet Earth and our life support system is in trouble,” said Oey over the phone. “We need to do more to take care of our Earth because it is suffering and the environmental debts that we are building up will come back very hard on our kids…That is why I am biking across the country to talk with people about plastic and climate change, those are the two biggest things that are happening right now to our Earth and are not that hard to prevent.”
Oey began his Save Our Seas 2019 Ride on Feb. 22 when he rode from Sunnyvale to San Francisco. He gave a talk at the Aquarium of the Bay in San Francisco and then he was on his way down the coast to continue to share his message.
As of early May, he had already given talks at more than 176 locations including the Monterey Bay Aquarium and a television station in San Diego. He also visited with the staffers at Ro Khanna’s office in Washington, D.C. to talk about the climate initiatives currently being discussed in Congress.
Oey says so far he’s on schedule to finish the trip with a talk at the New England Aquarium in Boston at the end of the month. He set out a little earlier than planned so he could get to his 35th college reunion in Boston in June. Oey says he was pleasantly surprised to find Mother Nature was cooperating.
“I got to see all the wildflower blooms,” said Oey. “[Arizona] had a super bloom going on at the time, which is just amazing. All across the U.S. [it’s] springtime so to see flowers pop up all over the place. It turned out to be a really good time. Plus, I do better with cold than with hot.”
In an ideal world, Oey would bicycle back across the U.S., but he says his wife misses him and that’s important.
“This is the longest we’ve ever been apart since we started dating,” said Oey. “I wanted to go roundtrip from San Francisco to Boston and back so I could completely do it under my own steam without using any fossil fuels, but that was too long for my wife, so I am flying one-way back.”
Oey says there are a number of ways people can help the environment, including talking to your lawmakers to walking or biking instead of driving. You can also donate in support of his ride by visiting www.climateride.org and searching “Oey.” All the money raised will go to nonprofits that help the environment.
“Take a step. Baby steps towards reducing your footprint on Earth and being more conscious of how you live,” said Oey. “The zero waste movement is very much about taking little steps at a time as you get used to it.”
“A really easy first step is stop using a straw,” Oey continued. “Do you really need a straw and do you even need a lid? You can just drink from a cup naturally with your lips. In fact, do you really need that cup, can you just bring your own cup for soda or for whatever? I just bring my water bottle everywhere.”
Oey is blogging during his trip and sharing his story. If you would like to find out what he’s up to, visit https://sosride.blogspot.com.