Electric bike, aka ‘active travel’, that is. That’s the proposed option for those who don’t want to walk, don’t have access to an electric car, or do but hit recharge problems, in the wondrous(?) net zero future. The real obsession is that with minor trace gases in the atmosphere, leading to all sorts of improbable and foolish policy ideas and decisions.
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Globally, only one in 50 new cars were fully electric in 2020, and one in 14 in the UK, says TechXplore.
Sounds impressive, but even if all new cars sold were electric, it would still take 15-20 years to replace the world’s fossil fuel car fleet.
The emission savings from replacing all those internal combustion engines with zero-carbon alternatives will not feed in fast enough to make the necessary difference in the time we can spare: the next five years [Talkshop comment – says who?].
Tackling the climate and air pollution requires curbing all motorized transport, particularly private cars, as quickly as possible.
Focusing solely on electric vehicles is slowing down the race to zero emissions. This is partly because electric cars are not truly zero-carbon. Mining the raw materials for their batteries, manufacturing them and generating the electricity they need for fuel produces emissions.
Transport is one of the most challenging sectors to decarbonise because of its heavy fossil fuel use and reliance on carbon-intensive infrastructure—such as roads, airports and the vehicles themselves—and the way it embeds car-dependent lifestyles.
One way to reduce transport emissions relatively quickly, and potentially globally, is to swap cars for cycling, e-biking and walking—active travel, as it is called.
As many as 50% of car journeys are less than five km and could easily be replaced by active travel. Electric bikes increase this range to 10 km or more. They have become more popular over the past few years as prices have come down.
These bikes allow older people to cycle and help riders cycle in hilly areas. But they still provide physical activity.
In the Netherlands and Belgium, electric bikes have become popular for long-distance commutes of up to 30 km. They could be the answer to our commuting problems.
Full article here.
via Tallbloke’s Talkshop
June 18, 2021 at 03:21AM