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Global cyclists say NO to carbon - opt for CDM

Leszek J. Sibilski's picture

bikes in Ghana“Nothing compares to the simple pleasure of a bike ride.” - John F. Kennedy
 
From cradle to grave …

Currently, two billion bicycles are in use around the world. Children, students, professionals, laborers, civil servants and seniors are pedaling around their communities. They all experience the freedom and the natural opportunity for exercise that the bicycle easily provides.

That number could rise to as many as five billion bicycles by 2050, especially with the development of the electric bike that we are seeing worldwide. Over 50 percent of the human population knows how to ride a bike, and the annual production of bicycles is now over 100 million per year. In comparison, car production is currently at about 60 million units per year.

The bicycle is unique and deserves to be given a focus by the global community that it surprisingly has not yet received.

This is especially true of politicians who often underestimate the power of voters who take their freedom to pedal very seriously. City planners also need to be aware of how the bicycle contributes to decreased congestion and improved urban livability worldwide. There are, however, some wonderful exceptions such as the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, Rome mayor, Ignazio Marino, Taipei mayor, Ko Wen-je, the 108th Mayor of New York City, Michael Bloomberg, Paris mayor, Anne Hildalgo, Rio de Janeiro mayor, Eduardo Paes, and former Washington DC mayor, Adrian Fenty who recognize the importance of incorporating bikes into city planning.

Many countries and cities already share best practices on how to become more cycling friendly. A process that the European Cyclists’ Federation and World Cycling Alliance is heavily engaged in, which recently lead to the EU ministers of Transport agreeing in a groundbreaking “declaration on cycling as a climate friendly transport mode” at a meeting in Luxembourg in early October 2015.

The former mayor of Munich, Christian Ude once said, "Do we want people in leading positions that are too scared to cross a city center on a bicycle? Of course not.  Let cyclists get at it!”  Cyclists – as citizens - tend to be a very organized and active group with bulk voting power that could be unleashed at any time to advocate for global policy change.

Hello, cycling is global social movement!

With France’s Tour de France, Italy's Giro and Spain's Vuelta, UCI’s world championships rotating each year to a different city, and with the Olympics held on different continents, competitive cycling covers the world. Japan, for example is still enjoying the traditional Kirin races. Cycling for all is well rooted in countries such as the Netherlands, where they have more bicycles than residents. The Netherlands also enjoy a amazing infrastructure with heated bike paths, and artistic marvels such as the illuminated Van Gogh’s bike path powered by solar energy. There are even floating cycle roundabouts. With its many amenities for bicyclists, Copenhagen, Denmark bypassed Amsterdam as the most bike-friendly city. Forty-five percent of all work and study places within the Copenhagen are reached by bicycle every day. Interestingly, thirty percent of families with 2 or more children use the cargo bike as their primary means of transportation.

The Old Continent is in the process of transitioning smoothly from cars to cycling. The use of the cargo bikes for commercial freight in inner city areas has become the “new normal.” This massive behavioral and cultural change is not only about carbon sequestration, but also related to space preservation and health improvement. The bicycle stands very strong as a singular means of transportation, but is also the new model of multi-modal transportation. Down-Under, cycling lovers excel in elite cycling. Team Australia has grand tour, Olympic, and rainbow jersey triumphs under its belt.

South America breeds an extraordinary group of mountain climbers, while North America is home to a growing number of cycling races, including this year’s #Richmond2015 and the super exciting RAGBRAI event. Many American cities are undergoing change and making efforts to become more bicycle friendly with assistance from organizations like People for Bikes, the Washington Area Bicyclist Association, and more. Increasingly, non-for-profits are turning into cycling as a platform to galvanize their constituencies for social causes such as climate change, LLS, MS, and AIDS, and they have raised MILLIONS of dollars while providing an easy way for average citizens to cycle and interact socially with one another.
 
This year’s Tour de France featured the first African-continent team, MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung, a team which is committed to #bicycleschangelives and raising funds for Qhubeka, World Bicycle Relief’s program in South Africa. The team is quickly becoming a vibrant part of the World Tour. 

China is also becoming an unrivaled leader in bike sharing stations in their mega-cities.

If the stationary bike is taken into consideration, there are bicycles in Antarctica, in Outer Space on the board of International Space Station, and even onboard the airplanes of global leaders. Stationary bicycles are a top choice for many navy sailors, too, while on overseas missions. Water bikes are another option and top choice for water hiking at many resorts.

Last, but not least, the global community of cycling is happy to see the rapid development of cycling for women, which has become a solid fixture of every major event on top of strong performances from para-cycling. 

Einstein riding a bikeYou don’t have to be Albert Einstein to understand the power of bicycle!

Globally, bicycles are affordable for both rich and poor as an everyday mode of transportation, and usable by men and women, young and old, alike. Bicycles improve physical fitness, reduce air pollution and CO2 emissions, and only require low-cost infrastructure.
 
Cycling can even be intellectually stimulating. Consider the words of Albert Einstein, who when asked how he came up with the theory of relativity replied, "I thought of that while riding my bicycle". He is also quoted as saying, “Life is like riding a bicycle; to keep your balance, you must keep moving.” 
 

Clean Development Mechanism and the bicycle carbon impasse?

Transport contributes to about 23% of global CO2 emissions and is predicted to keep growing. Based on current trends, the world’s share of GHG emissions derived from transport could be as high as 50% by 2030.
 
The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) promotes greenhouse gas reduction projects that contribute to sustainable development, such as carbon neutral transportation projects and others that might also include and promote bicycling. It is the first global, environmental investment and credit mechanism of its kind, providing a standardized emission offset instrument. Defined in Article 12 of the Kyoto Protocol, the CDM allows projects in developing countries to earn a saleable credit, certified emission reduction (CER), for each ton of CO2 equivalent they reduce. Countries with an emission-reduction or emission-limitation commitment under the Protocol can use CERs to cover a part of their commitment. The CERs are also used by large events, companies, organizations and even individuals to offset unavoidable emissions. The CDM is also used to deliver results-based finance to drive sustainable development and monitor the end results. To date, almost 8,000 CDM projects and programs have been registered in 107 developing countries and some 1.6 billion CERs have been issued.
 
However, transportation projects, despite their potential, have to date been underrepresented in the CDM, comprising only 0.3% of all projects. To date, there have been no projects targeting bicycling. The main reason for this is the time-consuming procedures required for credible quantification of emission reductions and for fulfilling CDM requirements, particularly when a large number of small emission reduction activities in distributed locations are involved. Many of these complexities are being resolved through the introduction of Program of Activities (PoA) under the CDM. Steps are also being taken to address this with the possible development of more CDM methodologies specifically designed for the transport sector, including projects promoting non-motorized transport, such as use of bicycles. The CDM carries a tremendous opportunity to promote bicycling worldwide as cycling intensity of travel is only 17 grams CO2e/km. It is time to start a global dialog on how to make use of the CDM to include cycling as the preferred mode of transportation. It’s time to take seriously this marvelous machine that can help us avoid polluting emissions and create a healthier and more eco-friendly world.
 
Carbon Intensity of Travel
 
On two wheels around Seoul!

Mayor of SeoulOne of the economic super powers, the Republic of Korea is starting to pay more attention to the phenomenon of the bicycle and its practical use. From the Blue House to City Hall, politicians and experts are analyzing every scenario. Bicycling in Seoul has included thousands of bicycling enthusiasts along Han River, but another important step has just been made by inviting the citizens of Seoul to a bike-sharing concept with 20,000 brand new bikes for public use in the downtown area by the year 2020. Currently, Koreans own almost 17 million bicycles, and more than fifty percent of the Korean population uses a bike at least once a month for leisure. The greatest priority for bicycle advocates is to exchange for bicycles the cultural and symbolic image of a car as a prestigious possession and the primary means of transportation.

Witnessing the Korean success in the implementation of the public transport in the city of Seoul in early 2000, we should only assume that they would approach bicycle policies with the same outcome. Seoul could be a perfect place to start de-motorization of the Asian continent, if not the entire planet! Non-motorized transport is a relatively inexpensive investment for cities to make to reduce GHG emissions when used to complement mass transit projects such as energy efficient rail and bus systems.

The stars are aligned for Korea to take a charge in harnessing CDM for cycling!

The current Mayor of Seoul, who was just elected as new President of ICLEI, is fully aware that bicycling is eco-friendly, healthy and economical. It's a common practice in Asia to share knowledge and experience. Whenever the officials of such a mega-city like Seoul focuses on a new project, others are sure to take notice! Another chance to engage in worldwide dialogue on cycling will be at Velo-City Global 2016 taking place in Taipei in February.

In fact, cycling advocates in Kuala-Lumpur yearn to work together with Seoul officials while harnessing the CDM. The first global accord for the CDM bicycle application has been signed on October 15, during the “2015 Seoul Bike Symposium”, hosted by Seoul Metropolitan Government and organized by the Seoul Bike Transport Promotion Institute, lead by Kwon Heog-Chul. Perhaps, now is the time to unite in solidarity and speak with one voice on behalf of the bicycling global community and to include the bicycle in the battle against carbon emissions!

A word of wisdom and pragmatism from a man who knows a lot about Solidarity:

“I'm lazy. But it's the lazy people who invented the wheel and the bicycle because they didn't like walking or carrying things.” - Lech Walesa



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Top photograph of bikes in Ghana by Arne Hoel/The World Bank
Phtograph of Albert Eistein- permission for publication granted by Leo Baeck Institute
Mayor Park, Won-Soon (Seoul City) - permission granted by Seoul Metropolitan Government 

 

Comments

Submitted by Anonymous on

Wow! I find it extremely amazing how more than 50% of the worlds population know how to ride a bicycle and yet they aren't doing it! 100 million bikes are made each year meanwhile only 60 million cars are made. With numbers like these you would expect more people to be on bikes! And the perks that come along with it don't hurt either! You become physically more healthy, you're helping the environment and its cost efficient! More people should take on biking! This is very possible so let's do it!

Submitted by matilda adu(birhanu) on

This is a very interesting and relevant topic to the whole world.The effect of global warming is becoming more and more catastrophic.If situations continue at this current pace,the world will be in a more disastrous situation.In order to curb the existing colossal reality related with carbondioxide emission and its impact to the entire world, biking should be encouraged because of its many advanages.It is affordable.It is usable by men and women.It gives physical fitness,reduce pollution and carbondioxide.On top of this it is low-cost.

Submitted by Jen M on

I agree with the statement about everyone being able to buy a bike. Whether rich or poor, it's possible for everyone to get their hands on a bike. I also think that it is amazing for Korea to be so active in the movement to ride bikes more and reduce the co2 in the atmosphere. Most politicians just address the problem, whereas the major of Seoul is getting his hand down and dirty into the situation. Not just reducing co2, it's also benefits individuals who ride their bikes to improve physical health but is more environmentally friendly and cheaper.

Submitted by Adam Jordan on

Cycling is very popular around the world. It is also very competive and gets a lot of media from it. Cycling has raised Millions of dollars towards non profit organizations. In Korea, 50% of Korean own and use bikes as a way of transportation. A lot of people and countries have become more open and friendly to using cycling. Cycling Is a social and powerful movement. Cycling can help change the world and is doing just that.

Submitted by Sebastian Baron on

I like a lot this transport vision. Cities should invest more in bicycle paths to increase this transport method. It would helps dramatically to our society and environment, and it also will help to keep people healthier than ever. More bicycles less cars should be mandatory in all cities around the world.

Submitted by Gian on

A global movement towards cycling needs to start and it needs to start now! Cycling doesn't have any negative efffects they're actually all positives. From being eco-friendly to health benefits, cycling really does the body, environment and the economy some good. More people, especially world leaders needs to look more into making their nations more bike friendly. By doing this there will be less congested streets and a cleaner air to breathe. Let's build a healthier bodies and a cleaner earth!

Submitted by TG on

Bicycles are Eco-friendly, healthy, and economical. There are many benefits of choosing a bicycles over gasoline cars. It's important that People around the world know that climate change will continue to get worse if something is not done today. Bicycles are not only good for the environment, they can create freedom for society,especially women.

Submitted by Vivian on

After reading this article I really want to go to Netherlands because they have a heated bike path, plus Van Gogh's art work lighted up by solar power lights! Biking is the easiest and better way to enjoy the scenery, less likely to have an accident because you are distracted. Bike has become the fastest, healthier, and less polluted way to get around. It's amazing to see how many old and young people have come to love biking and it a way of bringing cominuties together.

Submitted by Melanie Lee on

Biking will help the environment so much! Based off of the chart shown above, cycling is the least harmful to the environment out of all the types of transportation! It barely emits any carbon. We need to use less harmful types of transportation like bicycling to help the environment. By 2030, 50% of the CO2 emissions could be from us driving! We as a nation are growing in the cycling community, but we need to be bigger. We need to spread the word. Tell people that cycling is the future.

Submitted by Michelle Cheng on

When people think about bicycling, the first thing that usually comes to mind is bicycling is a sport. Although bicycling is considered a sport, it is also considered a lifestyle, unity, and a great way to reduce pollution. The bicycle movement is spreading,it's as if the bicycle is cycling across the globe in hopes of bringing the world together.23% of global CO2 emissions is caused by transportation, cycling can minimize the damage. Seeing other nations around the world confident and depending on cycling provides a good example and leads other into the bicycle movement. We should all follow the bicycle movement by picking up our bikes and cycling, we can also encourage others to spread the information and to bike as well. Keep the world cycling and moving as a unit.

Submitted by Kola on

With two wheels i think all lives could be save from different environmental hazards. Most especially pollution from automobiles that are hazardous to our lives. As more and more attentions are rising in different places to contribute to this change it will help preserve everything we care for, that are being destroyed by pollutions

Submitted by Helena Nielsen on

Bikes are not only a way to prevent pollution of carbon but they are a faster and quicker way of transportation. Bikes are very where around the world and all are not detrimental to our environment but help our environment. Bikes are expanding and expanding in the amount they are used everyday because more and more people are becoming more aware of how much more they are not hurting the environment like other ways of transportations. Bikes allow freedom and I'm power people to show they can complete a goal and achieve what they want. This arnica talks about Chobenhagen, Denmark which i have visited many times having my whole dads family live there. I can hands on see how much more they use bikes then any where around here. Also you can see how much cleaner their environment his because they are a lot more focused on carbon and not having to much polluted. I believe if we all help each other and work together we can all say no to carbon and make bikes became a first choice of transportation and as a way to get around.

Submitted by Arghavan Gilanshah on

In today's world global warming is a huge issue for every individuals and even bigger problem for our future's generations. Bicycling is one way which helps the global warming by reducing the air pollution. Air pollution causes by cars, factories and others. Cars produce lots of pollution becuase of gas. When gas is burning, it makes carbon dioxide (CO2) which is harmful for humans and for earth. We can help this issue by bicycling more instead of driving a car. Also, we can save money and gas by bicycling and we can be more healthy by bicycling which is a good exercise.

Submitted by Julienne on

The bicycle is unique and deserves to be given a focus by the global community that it surprisingly has not yet received. The bicycle easily provides freedom and a natural opportunity for exercise. The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, Rome mayor, Ignazio Marino, Taipei mayor, Ko Wen-je, the 108th Mayor of New York City, Michael Bloomberg, Paris mayor, Anne Hildalgo, Rio de Janeiro mayor, Eduardo Paes, and former Washington DC mayor, and Adrian Fenty all deserve recognition for not underestimating the power of voters who enjoy taking their freedom to pedal very seriously. Like the former mayor of Munich, Christian Ude once said, "Let cyclists get at it!" Cyclists – as citizens - tend to be a very organized and active group with bulk voting power that could be unleashed at any time to advocate for global policy change. Cycling is global social movement! You don’t have to be Albert Einstein to understand the power of bicycle!

Submitted by Diego cortaza on

This article enlighten us to the fact that while Some European countries & Korea seem to be leading the movement. They are going green and switching to bikes! We as a country are falling behind, while some regions are introduced with bike sharing and other innitiatives, others are left in the dust. We must unite as a team and move forward toward the Greener side together! Bikes are the answer and people need to know!

Submitted by COURTNEY KASPRZYK on

Most countries experience the freedoms and natural opportunities for excersise and transportation, but still some do not. With over 50% of people able to ride bicycles, most communities still use motorized means of transportation. In some countries there are amenities for cyclists. Maybe that's what we need. Maybe avoiding polluting emissions, providing an eco-friendly world, and increasing the health of individuals isn't enough. We cycle for special causes, for competition, and even intellectual stimulation...so why can't we do the same for our enviornment. We need to make bicycling a preferred mode of transportation. It will increase urban livability world wide. Carbon sequestration, space preservation, and health improvement are only some of the positive outcomes. Can you imagine living in a world, in a community, where there are healthier individuals and and significantlyric less pollution? Maybe then we will be able to focus on things we can't actually control.

Submitted by Shan L. on

Thank you Professor Sibilski for posting this article. I think bicycle is a great product that save you money on gasoline, exercise your body, improve your health, and the most important thing, in addition to all the benefits, protect out environment! So why not do it? For yourself and for the one and the only one world. Many economic super powers already have their eyes on bicycling so it must be a great idea. Keep biking, don't fall behind while everybody is moving forward.

Submitted by Tim E on

I agree with the scope of this commentary. I would also add that it would be great to see more encouragement for children to ride their bicycles to school. This may have to be part of a community's infrastructure planning to maximize safety, but if children learned to do it through school programming, they would also be more apt to recognize it a viable transportation solution when they become adults.

Submitted by Alisha K on

Bicycle is an amazing invention. Not only its eco friendly and affordable, it's also a great exercise tool that improves people's health. Many people these days waste their precious money on exercise machines, or get monthly plan at the gym. Instead of wasting money, they can invest on a bike, which can last for a long time. Riding a bicycle is equivalent to working out at the gym. Bicycling is a great way to keep a person fit, get fresh air, and also bond with family members. Unlike other transportations which are the lead cause of air pollution, bicycle is eco-friendly and does not harm the earth. Its a win win situation for everyone. After reading the article, I found out that many countries and cities are going green and using bicycle instead of other transportations. We humans have already caused so much damage to our mother earth, and i think its time to fix our mistakes. Bicycle is an amazing start to help our mother earth.

Submitted by Jaybird on

What a brilliant idea, to include cycling as a part of the CDM and emissions trading allowances, and watch it grow as a social movement.

Submitted by Ethan Hoffman on

Definitely an eye-opening article to say the least; sheer proof in front of our very own eyes that bikes are clearly not being utilized to their full potential! Not only do bicycles offer an environmentally friendly way of transportation, but they're also much cheaper to produce and maintain than cars! Even more, bikes solve the problem that every major city faces, traffic congestion! I'd be baffled as to why more people don't push for more incentives to bike instead of driving, but people take time to adjust and accept radical changes! I do see bikes as being a long term answer, but not today. We, as people, must keep pushing and advocating for bikes over cars, and as more people slowly join in the mass population will soon follow in suit; civil rights didn't happen over night, and neither can the bike movement. Only through persistence and rational reasoning can we make bikes the main source of transportation across the globe! Bikes can take us far, so lets ditch the car!

Submitted by Agustina K on

While we all know that riding is better for the environment than driving a car, many of us are not part of the change. This is a very eye opening article. Per year, more bikes are made than cars, which shows that bicycles are easier and and cheaper to build. Not only do they help the environment but they help the person who rides it by getting in some exercise, improving their health and best of all, helps the people save money. Other countries, like the United States, are trying to help stop pollution by riding bicycles. Many people are aware that cars pollute the air but simply do not care to ride their bike instead. Many people do not think about what could happen to the world if we do not start living a more eco-friendly life.

Submitted by Eve on

Bicycles are a very unique item to have. A bicycle prevents environmental pollution there by inhibiting some health complications that could arise from gases like carbon. Bicycles are also recreational. The moment you use a bicycle to work or school, you are getting some fitness so it's like hitting two birds with one stone. Every one who owns a car or not, should have a bicycle too.

Submitted by Kwon Heog-Cheol on

This is definitely right opinion that bike transport should be applied to CDM mechanism. I will try my best to make Seoul as bike-leading city in the world.
I imagine more and more people ride bikes and get incentives by making the world with less GHG emission. Hope bike would be main transportation in one day.

Submitted by Stephen Hahm on

There are a lot of ways to save our planet. One of our main problem is pollution. If more and more people are riding bicycles instead of driving a car, then we can solve our pollution problem little by little. We can't expect our pollution problem to be resolved in 24 hours but if we act now, we can solve a lot more than we would 10 years from now. Bicycling is a great way of transportation. It doesn't need gas, license, and checkups. Just like the article said, South Korea has one of the best transportation systems in the world. You can get to any destination with Korean metro and it is only couple dollars (in Terms of US Currency). In US, since the land is so big, the only way to travel is by cars or buses. However, even though it may take little longer than cars, cycling is a great way to travel and it also helps you exercise so either way it is a win win situation for cycling. So, more and more people should recognize that there are a lot of ways to transport from one place to another besides cars.

Submitted by Alejandra on

Very good article, very interesting facts, and a very good point about bicycles. I couldn't agree more to this piece of article, knowing bikes are eco-friendly machines that can be use EVERYWHERE. I believe if we use more bikes in society the less Carbon will be polluted in the air. Bikes are very popular in other countries, for example in my country Chile the southern part the majority of my family members use bikes to get around such as stores, school and doctors appointments. Whenever I go I can feel the fresh air going in my lungs. In today society many find bikes are embarrassing to use as a transportation, unless you use a car you feel important, but we can change that mind set of people if we all work together and create a movement. Carbon can not win the future!

Submitted by Michael G. on

Nice and very thoughtful article. The quote at the end resonates with me since I could be considered a lazy person at times.

Submitted by Guisbelle on

The bicycle is the best way to get around not even that but it is healthy. We should all be an example of how to keep our world healthier. Bicycles have been adopted in many different countries because of the easier access they have to get around and also bring things. Women and children should be also given the opportunity to ride bicycles and given the freedom to access these bicycles whenever needed.

Submitted by Guisbelle on

The bicycle is the best way to get around not even that but it is healthy. We should all be an example of how to keep our world healthier. Bicycles have been adopted in many different countries because of the easier access they have to get around and also bring things. Women and children should be also given the opportunity to ride bicycles and given the freedom to access these bicycles whenever needed.

Submitted by Carolina Montoya on

I would like to have the opportunity to collaborate with this kind of projects. I would like that the government of my country invest more in this kind of projects and steal less. I have the hope that one day we will be part of a woltd where we all can be breath peace, fun and pure air.

Submitted by Jermaine Fabay on

Cycling has lists of benefits for all of us such as economical, promotes health, reduces air pollution, space friendly, and etc. The irony is this, when it is beneficial, it is more likely to be ignored and less tackled. Back in my country, our urban places are known for its traffic. I am hoping that sooner the government will come up with this simple solution-cycling. It will truly help our country in reducing traffic, air pollution, and as well as stress and anxiety. May we not ignore the fact that there are young people, children, and unborn babies that will also live in this world that we live in. Let us be considerate to the next generations by helping in saving our environment, and cycling is one of the activities to save mother earth.

Submitted by Cornelius smith on

The article talks about the positives bicycles to society. The global impact if more people rode bikes as there primary form of transportation would cause a decrease the co2 in earths atmosphere. Another pro is the affordability of bike to both poor and rich people. The cycling movement is one that has no negative effects to the earth and society. Bicycles is a renewable form of travel that intellectually stimulates the mind. The amount of pollution towards environmental also decreased. Not just the environmental positives but the economic, health, and social aspects would also be better.

Submitted by Bernhard Ensink on

Great article, Leszek. Let's keep in contact! Thanks for mentioning ECF and World Cycling Alliance. Bernhard.

Submitted by Johel Encarnacion on

Lives would be changed if more people would start biking. Biking helps the economy. People should be allowed to use bikes. Other people who disagree just shouldn't do it. Those who want to should be allowed to. Bicycling is a healthy transportation method. If it helps the economy and many people then it should be pointed out that is good

Submitted by Kimberly Barros on

Thank you for your insight in this serious issue. I've always taken bikes for granted and never thought about what this mode of transportation could mean to people around the world. Since I've started taking my sociology course, I've come out of the ignorance and am aware of the issues at hand and now more than ever I want to be a part of the solution. I've taken a particular interest in getting bicycles to more women in nations where they don't play a large role. The empowerment of women is so important as more and more women are faced with hard situations like trying to get basic necessities, and bicycles can be a simple solution to some of their biggest problems.

Submitted by Nicholas Jungmarker on

Before reading this article I had no idea that bikes were so popular and that over 50% of the population know how to ride a bike. Although in the area which I live in bicycles are used by most, they should be! Saving the environment is a team effort and bicycles are a great way to reduce emissions. Even if only a small group of people change their ways of transport, every bit makes a difference. In fact before this article the idea of taking your family out in bikes to run errands sounded a bit inconvinient to me, but the truth it people do it every day with no problem. Bikes seem like they could be the solution to may social problems, and given that they're pretty cheap compared to a car which you must also buy gas for every week, everyone should be using them to get around!

Submitted by Samantha Bateman on

I have always found biking a great way of transportation but never had the chance to use it. Living in the Washington D.C. metro area bikes have become a staple for many instead of driving a car and getting stuck in traffic. The problem in America verse many European countries is that we are not just physically but emotionally attached to our cars, also that there are not sufficient bikes lanes, and biking laws to protect cyclists from cars on the road. We are very oriented on the fact that the car is a vital part of the American dream that everyone wants to have one and believes it to be a necessity of life. One of my friends bikes to school every day and always gets a better parking spot than I do, and I leave earlier than she does! Bikes also are cheaper, takes less time and money to maintain, and benefits your health plus the environment! It will take some time to change the mentality that bikes are the only use of transport, but like every social change time is the friend not the enemy.

Submitted by Darinka on

I really enjoyed reading this article. I believe bicycles are the future and we all need to take a step together to save the earth. It's not only a way to get the environment healthier but you as well get fit. There are so many benefits of riding a bike. I see why there are so many countries where bikes are the best way to get around town because they are just so convenient. We should all come together and do our best to get more people to ride bikes instead. Our community is growing and we need to help ourselves. Thank you for sharing this with us.

Submitted by TheOneCalledB on

I'm surprised to know that bikes beat out car production by 40 million! With 50% of the human population having the ability to ride, there certainly should be a global effort to promote more cycling. As technology and interest develop, affordable biking solutions for the disabled would bring that percentage much higher.

I understand there would be effort involved in making biking a viable option, as city planning in many places would have to add additional bike routes and accommodate for the growth. However, America as a whole would only benefit from investing in cycling. We could fight obesity rates and make a huge cut in emissions at the same time! All most people would need to jump on board would be a proper government incentive, much like the ones that come with installing solar panels in a home.

Submitted by Henok Gaim on

Many people undermined the drastic changes cycling can have. Cycling is similar to language, its something that can unifies a group of people in order to deal with global problems. I remember hearing about a Detroit cycling project headed by Jason Hall in order to fix the troubled city of Detroit by unifying people with bikes. The Organization was called "Detroit Bike city" and Hall's idea to fix Detroit with Bikes just didn't cross paths with me. I never really thought much about cycling but now I know the resounding effects it can have on society. Now I know, cycling isn't a sport or hobbie, its something that can bring freedom and health to someones life.

I found it interesting how the world has so many bikes and yet carbon fuel-ed Cars dominate our air and transportation. Saving the environment should always be on the top of the list of priorities, in this world, everyone can make a difference opting for riding a bike at least for once.

Submitted by Aminata carter on

I find it stocking that sooo many people out there can ride bikes , but there are still so many cars out on the streets. Bikes cost way less and there easier to maintain. In my city there is a bike system and it makes it easy for people to be able to use the bike the time needed instead of going to go buy one. As a young women I was never taught to ride a bike and I always wanted to learn because it is a great part of exercise. With the millions of people there should be more of us trying to make this happen.

Submitted by Umunatu Kamara on

Riding a bike is much more convenient than driving a car or taking public transportation. You save a lot of gas and money.Living in the metropolitan area, bikes have become a staple way of getting around. Us Americans are attached to our cars, its more so a necessity to us. In European countries not everyone has a car. In my country, Sierra Leone, a lot of people walk , and some carpool. Our community is growing and we need to start finding ways to benefit ourselves, one way is to save gas and start riding bikes more often or even start walking more often.

Submitted by Devika gupta on

Bicycles are very efficient and clean. The earth can benefit a lot from the changes from a motor vehicle to a bicycle. The adoption of the transportation in various countries has been great as well, people see the harm and how they can fix it by biking around. Biking will positively reduce carbon and will make people fit. I hope one day that I will bike everywhere, the change can start with me.

Submitted by Oscar Lopez on

People are so caught up in their busy lives that they lose focus on their own health and the health of the world they live in. So many complain about obesity and point fingers at fast food restaurants, but no one is taking the blame on themselves. People need to stay away from a sedentary life style. People need to be more involved in activity outside. I am an outdoor person. I hate sitting down. Its one of the reasons i hate school. I hate doing computer work at work. Most importantly we are damaging the world we live in for our kids. People living sedentary is wrong and hurtful to our live on many different levels.

Submitted by Abby Dawit on

This article is very refreshing. Reason for being is because advocating to ride bicycle more has so many advantages . Not only is riding a bicycle good to not have to deal with traffic and save more money from buying s car but is also a very good way to get people from all over the word to get them to exceriese.

Submitted by Christopher Arias on

I agree with this article. Not only would this help our enviroment but it can help those who are currently unhealthy and looking for a way to become healthier. Bycicling is a healthy alternative for the earth and ourselves, the only thing remaining now is full government support. Walking home some streets have their own dedicated bycicle lane but most do not and it's an extreme danger to most byciclists to be on the road without a dedicated lane. Without this there will be more byciclists in danger of being in an accident.

Submitted by Nangoh ndoh esemoto on

The economical advantages and the easiness of bikes are conveniences of short term travailing. I live around dc so i know the importance of bikes, its relibility and best way to a metro for long distance transport. Moreover biking helps health wise it builds our physic and there by guaranteeing longer life. However with all its benefits we may still find the need to use cars because not only in movement of etra laugauges but as a faster means of transport in emergency situations.

Submitted by Diana H on

Imagine the amount of CO2 we could decrease just by cycling. Imagine how much healthier our bodies and our minds would be for opting to ride a bike. I've noticed that this movement is already starting to grow here in the DC area. I've seen rental bike stations in many places and I've seen how those stations are nearly empty because so many people opt to ride a bike. The stats of the Carbon Intensity of travel really gets to me, wow, the fuel numbers from cars, buses, airplanes and etc. are dramatic compared to cycling. Big kudos to those countries, like Korea that is starting to see the practical use of bikes! Let's save our world and our health, SAY NO 2 CO2!

Submitted by Bethel Berhane on

I never really had an interest for cycling until this past summer when Daniel Teklehaimanot of MTN-Qhubeka took the “King of the Mountain” position at the Tour de France. As an Eritrea, this was something amazing. Eritrea has always prospered in cycling but this year the country became famous for its endeavors. Cycling brought people together. Hundreds of D.C. Maryland and Virginia Eritrean residents woke up at 5am on the day of the UCI event to support the 5 Eritrean cyclists. MTN-Qhubeka later tweeted “If there was a world champion award for fans… It would go to Eritrea for sure.” There’s a plethora of fabricated and negative facts regarding Eritrea in the media so having such success in cycling really helped shine a positive light towards the country.

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