The COP26 Conference came to an end a couple of weeks ago but it seems like climate change, and what we can all do to help, is at the forefront of everybody’s mind.
Besides all of the obvious things we can all do at home – turning off lights, recycling, wearing a jumper before cranking up the heating – one sure-fire way to reduce your impact on the environment is to cycle, instead of drive, as much as you can!
The FLIT-16 was designed to provide a convenient and easy way to travel around day to day, but there are many environmental benefits that come along with it.
Doing our bit: Alex has changed energy supplier to a much greener alternative, using 75% renewable energy and 25% nuclear
Doing our bit: Adam is making an effort to eat mainly plant-based, sustainable food
Reduced carbon emissions
Some of these benefits are well known. By cycling to work you no longer rely on fossil fuels, the extraction and consumption of which have a significant impact on the environment, releasing harmful emissions into our atmosphere. The more people that cycle to work, the fewer cars on the road, which in turn means that there will be less demand for fossil fuels and less carbon emissions.
The European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF) carried out a study looking at the difference in CO2 emissions between cars, bikes, and e-bikes, taking into consideration the CO2 released during production of these vehicles. It found that, per passenger-kilometre, cars emitted 271g of CO2, whilst e-bikes only emitted 22g. That’s a huge 92% less than cars!
A study carried out at the University of Leeds found that e-bikes, if they were used for as many journeys as possible, could reduce carbon emissions from cars in England by 50%, saving around 30 million tonnes of CO2 per year.
Of course, this would require everyone to do their part, but it goes to show how much we can do, and all from the seat of an e-bike.
Doing our bit: Dave cycles through Cambridge to work every day
Doing our bit: Gemma gets her all of her fresh fruit and vegetables from a local organic farm in a weekly veg box
Less noise pollution, more wildlife
Other benefits are perhaps less well known, but are equally as important. During the pandemic it became clear across the world that the day to day activities of human beings were impacting the local wildlife in cities. As we retreated and cars were no longer out on the streets, animals ventured out.
The noise pollution generated by cars has a negative impact on wildlife in the UK. Cycling to work, or into town at the weekend, significantly reduces this noise pollution, allowing the wildlife some peace and quiet!
Better for us, and our planet
Not only does switching from driving to cycling help reduce our impact on the environment, it also helps to reduce the amount of polluted air you are exposed to. Research by the University of Leeds has shown that cyclists are the least exposed to air pollution during their daily commute. People in cars, buses, and even those who walk to work, spend longer in toxic air than cyclists, so hop on your bike and get cycling!
Doing our bit: Ciaran became vegan two years ago after hearing about the benefits eating plant-based can have on the environment
Doing our bit: Matt cycles to get around the city, and for bigger trips he takes public transport