PHILADELPHIA, July 6, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- CityRyde, the leading bike-sharing innovator, announced today that the carbon methodology behind its revolutionary Inspire software has been validated under the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS), bringing to fruition the two-year development of a system that will energize bicycle sharing the world over. CityRyde has also received $345,000 in investment to bolster the company as it brings Inspire to market.
With Inspire, bike-sharing programs can track, certify and monetize carbon offset credits gained through the use of their shared bicycles. The software turns bike rides into cash through the creation and sale of those credits, creating additional income that will make bike shares more economically viable in a time when many municipalities lack the funds to maintain them.
In December 2010, the methodology behind Inspire became the first designed specifically for transportation to be submitted to the VCS Program, and on July 1, 2011, it received its first validation by First Environment – voted the best validator within the voluntary carbon market in 2011 by Environmental Finance. The Inspire methodology provides procedures for determining emission reductions associated with modal shifts in transportation as a result of the implementation of a bike-sharing program.
"This is a game changer – the entire bike-sharing industry is poised to take a major leap forward with the first validation of the Inspire methodology," said Jason Meinzer, COO and co-founder of CityRyde. "Inspire brings a crucial new revenue stream to this budding industry, and we look forward to applying it to sustainable transportation projects of all kinds down the road."
CityRyde developed the Inspire methodology to meet the rigorous standards of the VCS with assistance from Dr. Jurg Grutter, an internationally recognized leader in matching transportation projects with carbon funding. His company, Grutter Consulting, developed the methodology that allows the TransMilenio bus rapid transit system in Bogota, Colombia, to generate and sell carbon credits.
$345,000 in strategic "smart money" from some top-notch investors will assist in Inspire's rollout, as CityRyde has received a six-figure sum from the Virginia-based New Dominion Angels as well as approval for a matching investment from Pennsylvania-based Ben Franklin Technology Partners.
With more than 25% of greenhouse emissions in the U.S. coming directly from transportation, it has become increasingly important for commuters to recognize and reduce their carbon footprints. Since 2007, CityRyde has worked to spread the implementation of bike sharing both in the U.S. and abroad with the goal of reducing vehicle miles traveled – thus emissions as well.
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