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Local entrepreneur John Wells is cycling to Canada to participate in TEDSummit

Local entrepreneur John Wells is cycling to Canada to participate in TEDSummit

(Cody, Wyo.) - John Wells, local entrepreneur and TEDxCody licensee (“Depicting the West“ 2015) has been invited to the TEDSummit in Banff, Canada June 24, 2016. TED Summit is a five-day event for the most engaged members of the global TED community. It will convene 1,000 people from all over the world—a cross-section of those who helped mold TED into what it is today. TED is a nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks (18 minutes or less). TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics — from science to business to global issues — in more than 100 languages. Meanwhile, independently run TEDx events help share ideas in communities around the world. Wells said, “I'm excited to be exposed to new ideas that challenge my perspective and engage interesting conversations with genuine people from around the world.” John is taking a unique approach to the Summit—he’s bicycling the Great Divide Trail, a mountain bicycling trail that travels the Continental Divide all the way toBanff. The idea he is bringing to TEDSummit is that we need “calorie literacy” to understand the relationship between food and fuel in our lives. By calculating the calories in our gas, diesel, and coal as well as our food, we understand why the industrial revolution has tipped the ecological scale. He has developed the idea while working with local food and climate activists Mary L. Keller, Ph.D. and Rod Morrison, MBA. TED likes it so much they’ve given him the hashtag #CyclingtoTED in order for Wells to share his journey using social media as he travels. [image: great_divide_summit.jpeg.jpg] “The aim for cycling to Banff and joining the TEDSummit experience is to directly express what we take and what we leave at a collective level, and the need for conscious consumption that recognizes calories as a valuable measurement for human survival.” John will count the calories of his bike, his travels, and he’ll compare them with the calories used by the other TEDSummit attendees. “I will have plenty of hours to think about calories—how the earth stores them and how humans consume them as food and fuel, and the fact that we eliminate waste products from calorie burning.”  He’ll be comparing the calories it takes him to get to Banff by bicycle (round trip approximately 1,400 miles) to the calories used by planes and cars. His body will need 2,000 - 7,000 calories a day, depending on how hard he works, covering an average of 30 miles a day. A gallon of gas expends 31,000 calories (and get about 30 miles to the gallon). If he drove 500 miles in a day, he’d use 527,000 calories. He could fly in a day and a gallon of jet fuel expends about 38,000 calories at about 3-4 miles to the gallon when flying at altitude, expending 8, 854,000 calories if the plane flew the distance of the roads (rather than flying to SLC first, for example). Even if you divide the flight by 100 people, he would expend 88,540 calories in a few hours, and the waste products from all of those calories go straight into the atmosphere. This idea worth spreading has been germinating over the years from very different perspectives. As a skateboard activist, Wells has been thinking about the ways his generation moves across the cement and pavement of our towns and cities. Keller is a historian of religions at UW and puts it this way: “We are consuming calories and eliminating waste like Gods, and that is why humans have been able to alter the climate.” Morrison had his “calorie conversion” when Wes Jackson, international activist for perennial grains walked Morrison’s fields, and pointed to his tractor saying “You realize you can never grow more calories than you’re using with that tractor.” All three are interested in people making changes from the ground up, and settled on the ideas of calories as an idea the public can play with in their daily lives. As he networks with other TEDSummit attendees, Wells will calculate the cumulative calories of TEDsters to draw attention to how humans are consuming the earth’s calories and producing the waste of thousands upon thousands of calories that rise into the atmosphere. He will be counting TED’s calories. John is reducing his footprint by gathering supplies from the local cycling community, reusing gear for the trip. Show your support on Thursday May 26, 5-7 pm at the new Joyvagen Bike Shop 901 12th Street, where John plans to gather advice, gear, and goodwil. An account has been set up at Bighorn Federal under the name “Cycling to TED” where contributions can be made for those who would like to support Cody’s own TEDster. Be sure to follow on social media at #CyclingtoTED on Facebook, and Twitter. Says John, “TED is inspiring the way we share stories and communicate ideas by celebrating the genius in all of us. I am thrilled for this adventurous opportunity to represent ideas from the Cody area, and hope to share this excitement with both my local and global community.” #reboot #news