Photo via the Guardian
Kevin Shannon isn't even crusading for green causes. No, the ambitious 23 year-old cyclist is embarking on a 38,000 mile biking and sailing trip around the world for a different reason altogether--to raise money for a charity that assists combat veterans. His aim is to create absolutely no carbon emissions throughout the course of the daunting 3-year journey, which will take him across Europe, Asia, Australia, and both North and South America. Here's how he's going to do it.Shannon's expedition will take him through Europe by bike, then across the vast stretch of Russia, down through Mongolia and China's Gobi Desert, and through Southeast Asia. Then, he'll switch off between bike and sailboat as he navigates the Indonesian islands, Australia, and New Zealand. Once there, he'll hitch a yacht to Chile, where he'll ride north through South America.
Then, presumably to avoid the potentially dangerous border crossings in Colombia, he'll take another sailboat to Costa Rica. From there, it's another huge stretch of biking through Central America, Mexico, and up to San Francisco, California. Then it's 3,000 miles across the US and Canada, before he catches another sailboat ride home to the UK. Needless to say, it will be quite a journey--a map of his planned route is below.
Shannon is planning on embarking on the trip early next year, and before you write this off as some kind of a publicity stunt, consider this--besides a few companies sending him gear for the road, it's entirely unsupported. Which is why he'll be camping and cooking for himself most of the way, pulling his gear on a small trailer behind his bike. And he isn't looking to broadcast the zero emissions part of the trip for any environmental group or sponsor--it was simply a choice.
The Guardian recently spoke with Shannon, who said
"It may not be easiest way, the quickest way or even the cheapest, but there is always a zero-emission choice," he said when I spoke to him recently. The only time I will be creating emissions will be when cooking. Everything else is battery powered and I'll recharge all electrics with solar chargers."And while the purpose of the trip may not be to publicize green ideas, it will certainly help call attention to his cause--and since this may be the longest zero carbon trip ever attempted, his trip will likely call more attention to green ideas. Seems like a win-win--and one hell of a bike ride to boot.
The charity Shannon is raising money and awareness is Combat Stress, and there's more info about his expedition on his website, Because It Is There.