Environmental Benefits of Cycling
What are the environmental benefits of cycling? A small carbon footprint, for one. While bike manufacture and the creation of accessories and tire elements does cause some environmental damage, a bike is long-lived compared to other forms of transportation.
Unlike horses it creates no methane and leaves no bio-waste to deal with. It burns no fuel, it creates no carbon monoxide. A bike is the perfect green transportation, exceeded only by pedestrian travel.
Cycling also promotes earth-friendly awareness. One of the earth friendly sports practiced outdoors, there is no distancing yourself from your environment on a bike. Every green space comes into your senses as a treasure, and every blasted, spoiled field is experienced with an intimacy that leaves a memory trail. When you are out for a day of environmentally friendly biking you can't close yourself off the way you would in a car, or a stadium.
"This is a folding bike... it has no shocks... there was no flex in the seat. A small bump felt like a giant pothole! My butt went numb from a 1 hour bike ride.
"Enter Spiderflex... what a great solution to my sore-bum problem. It adds a tremendous amount of shock to my bike, and I can ride for hours without getting the bruising. I love my Spiderflex seat!"
A cyclist on a bike is a moving advertisement for the environmental benefits of cycling! Whether people witness the Tour de France, or just see the local cyclist pumping merrily to work free of traffic and all the other associated problems of automobiles, they are seeing an alternative to a destructive lifestyle many would otherwise never question. It's easy to accept pollution transportation as the only choice, when you never see the practicality and ease of green transportation.
Many cyclists carry their message further, making promotion of green transportation and the environmental benefits of cycling a top message to evangelize. Whether you carry a pro-environmental logo on your shirt or your equipment or simply give generously to environmental non-profits, cycling and cyclists have become an integrated part of environmental activism.
In the U.S., where cycling is often seen as a sport and not much more, it's easy to forget the cumulative environmental benefits of cycling. However a stay in any of the communities in the U.S. that are bike intensive, or a travel abroad to a nation where cycling is one of many common forms of day to day transportation for a large portion of the populace, the power of environmentally friendly biking can really catch up with you.
To dawdle through a narrow street in a car while a sea of smooth-riding cyclists go by, sparing the air, the water, and the soil, is to see real environmental impact at work. A bike: a green pleasure machine, and a regular powerhouse of green transportation!