image: Taiga Green Cycling Everything you buy affects the Earth, but some choices have a lesser impact. Educating yourself about the products you buy can empower you to make a difference in protecting the planet.  As part of this week's nature loving and bike riding adventure race in The Breck Epic, we share some highlights of sustainable businesses making the cycling world greener.  Gearing up for The Breck Epic was no easy task.  Endurance mountain bike racing requires a combination of muscle strength, cardiorespiratory stamina and muscular endurance, in addition to proper riding technique, good nutrition and excellent bicycle set-up.  Bike set up is important so what eco friendly resources are available?  

Given that The Breck Epic is a 6 day race riding long distances, safety matters as does proper bike maintenance and ergonomics.  Profiling two companies making a difference in green cycling include Ergon Bike Ergonomics and Squirt Lube chain lubricant. 

Ergon is ergonomics for bikes.  Their products make bike riding more comfortable and with the addition of their Greenlab initiative, their products greener.  At Ergon, Greenlab is the name given to an initiative within Ergon product development which combines the pre-existing aims of ergonomics and performance with ecology. In other words, Greenlab is about applying innovative ideas to overcome the contradictions that arise when trying to increase product performance and be more environmentally conscious. 

Greenlab has played a central role in Ergon’s recent product development, and the results of that can be seen starting with the innovations in the 2010 product range. Ergon’s extensive grip assortment is now presented with completely re-worked and re-invented packaging. This uses as little material as possible to achieve their aims, and much of the material used is recycled. The sustainability of the packaging was a key factor:  the packaging can be recycled after use, uses as few components as possible, and minimizes the environmental impact. The result of this new packaging quest is so innovative that it has already won the coveted German DesignPlus packaging prize. 

Squirt Lube is a new generation emulsion chain lubricant. It lubricates better, stays on the chain longer and keeps the chain clean. It is a wax based, long lasting dry lube that does not contain harmful solvents and is environmentally friendly. This liquid lubricant has unique properties, making it ideal for any cycling condition. It was developed to give better lubrication, last longer and keep the chain clean over long distances, for both mountain biking and road cycling.

Proudly, for today's Day 2 of The Breck Epic, I'll be using my Ergon grips on my bike and Squirt lube on my chain.  Check out the course profile here  and learn more about the race here.  Feel free to learn more about eco friendly bike gear in the posts below.