We have been following the Occupy Wall Street movement from the Mythological Quarter here in Copenhagen as it has spread around the world. It has been an amazingly heartening experience to see Occupy actions springing up in towns and cities globally as well as the good things that are coming out of the movement. Things like the General Strike in Oakland, CA, Bank Transfer Day (5 November in the United States), and this instance of environmental direct action happening in Zucotti Park at Occupy Wall Street, NYC.

A New York based, volunteer run, environmental group called Time’s Up, have created bicycle generators in response to the police removal of kerosene heaters. Mayor Bloomberg mandated police to remove all kerosene based heaters which were powering the media center, heaters, and lights, among other things,  right before a winter cold front was due to hit the city.

Time’s Up has been organizing and educating around environmental issues in New York for around twenty years, according to their website. The group was able to mobilize pretty quickly to create the system of bicycle generators after the removal of kerosene heaters was required. A stationary bike is pedaled to charge a battery which can then be used to power mobile electronics.

Here is a video from the Time’s Up, who are working with the Occupy Wall Street Sustainable Working group, explaining the project:

Note: This is a fundraising video, but don’t feel obligated to donate.

We wanted to highlight this exciting moment of environmental direct action and share with you a way to make your own bicycle generator, wherever you may be occupying.

With one of our earlier projects, The Library of Radiant Optimism for Let’s Re-make the World, we collected books from the late 1960s and the 1970s that exhibited an aesthetic and ethics of self-publication and self-education. These were how-to books from the counterculture. One of the books in our Library is Pedal Power in Work, Leisure, and Transportation, By James C. McCullagh, (Rodale Press, 1977 ). This how-to book is great because of the beautiful black and white illustrations combined with practical information about how to make your own bicycle generator, bicycle washing machine, or your own bicycle for grinding grain. Not sure if Time’s Up has read Pedal Power, but now you can and join in this combination of environmental direct action, material reuse, and creative workout system.

Click here to download a Hi-res PDF of the book, courtesy of Let’s Re-make, in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street.


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