Eco-Living Magazine

Biking for the Environment and for You

Posted on the 16 April 2013 by T_mackinnon @tedmackinnon


Biking has become a more popular form of commuting in many parts of the country, and local governments are taking note. In cities like Portland, Seattle and Minneapolis, more bike-specific lanes are being added throughout the urban areas, including even in high-density downtown areas where traffic is at its worst.

And this trend has no plans of going anywhere but up. Biking has officially become a mainstream means of getting around. If you’re interested and are considering embracing the biking revolution, you should educate yourself on all of the benefits headed your way. While we tend to thinking of biking’s benefits in terms of how they improve your own physical health, it’s an activity that can actually benefit others around you and the environment in general.

With that in mind, here are the reasons why biking is the right choice for you.

1. Biking contributes to a clean environment.

Bikes are extremely clean when you consider your own carbon footprint. A bicycle doesn’t use any fuel, and the overall energy expended to get from point A to point B is much less on a bike than it is in a car. And bikes don’t use other environmentally hazardous materials like motor oil and toxic batteries.

Plus, far fewer materials are needed to build a bike vs. a car, so you are helping conserve resources by doing away with automotive travel.

2. Biking is more environmentally friendly than a hybrid vehicle.

Hybrids are often advertised as the green-friendly solution to regular motor vehicles. While they might be better than a gas-only vehicle, they still fall well short of bicycles. Just the production of a single hybrid vehicle creates 14,000 pounds of carbon, an environmental detriment that bikes will never meet.

And while hybrids use less gas, they aren’t completely dependent of fossil fuels. And the batteries used in hybrids is a waste of precious natural resources, and the batteries themselves can be hazardous if exposed or leaked to the environment.

3. Biking saves you money.

The savings really add up when you start to consider the lower cost of a bicycle. The daily fuel expense disappears, the up-front cost of a car is much lower, and the maintenance and repair work needed also declines dramatically. Plus, you no longer have to pay for car insurance and car registration, which can reach into the thousands of dollars every year.

4. Biking can be part of your fitness routine.

Busy individuals will love the idea that they can work out at the same time they commute to and from work. Even with the exercise gained from riding your bike small distances, you can boost your metabolism and burn more calories in a given day, making it much easier to lose weight and keep it off. Using your bike to commute is a lifestyle change that can make a huge difference in your cardiovascular and overall physical health years down the road.Given the benefits, it’s no surprise that biking is catching on among commuters across the country. As cities become more bike-friendly, expect your two-wheeled transportation to become an even more attractive mode of transit that converts commuters of all shapes, sizes and ages. Consider investing in a bike now and riding it where you can to ease into the habit and reduce your dependence on your inefficient vehicle.

Biking for the Environment, and for You

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