On 31st May, EESC Vice President Gonçalo Lobo Xavier and European Commissioner for Trade Cecilia Malmström accompanied the EU Green Bikers by cycling with them during the first kilometer of their yearly journey by bike to Essen, Germany.
Departing from the Berlaymont building, they escorted 8 cyclists until the Arch of the Cinquantenaire and wished them success on their fifth annual bike tour to an "EU green capital". The group visits EU capitals who undertake special initiatives on addressing environmental challenges such as green infrastructure, showing that this is among the main priorities for the EU. They promote each capital's efforts by reaching it via the most sustainable and ecologically friendly means of transport, the bicycle.
This voyage of the EU Green Bikers aims to reach Essen by 2nd June, and plans to return to Brussels on 4th June – an almost 600-km journey in total. This year, the EU Green Bikers come from 7 nationalities and include 5 men and 3 women. Their previous tours include Nantes (2013), Copenhagen (2014), Bristol (2015) and Ljubljana (2016).