70% of Brits think e-bikes will help reduce emissions quicker than EVs

The majority of British people think e-bikes will help reduce carbon emissions more quickly that electric vehicles (EVs), according to new research from #BikeIsBest and the University of Westminster.

The poll of adults conducted by YouGov suggests broad support for e-bikes as a means of reducing carbon, even among those who are not currently considering purchasing one.

According to the research, one fifth of adults who have never owned an e-bike were considering purchasing one in the future, while 67% of participants states cost was the biggest obstacle preventing them from making a purchase.

Achieving widespread use of e-bikes as well as conventional bikes could replace three million car trips to work, and 10% of carbon emissions from commuting, finds the report.

woman in white t-shirt and black pants riding on black bicycle

Scott Purchas, Campaigns Consultant at #BikeIsBest, said: ‘The future is electric but not in the way people might think. All of the focus for subsidies has been for electric cars, but this new report demonstrates the substantial benefits of electric bikes and how essential they are for rapidly decarbonising transport, improving our health and cleaning up the air at the same time.

‘We are lagging behind countries in Europe who have used subsidies to accelerate the shift to e-bikes. Given rising living costs, this report shows that an e-bike subsidy would have a very positive impact across a range of backgrounds, as well as reducing congestion even for people who don’t cycle.’

Previous research has found that e-bikes are substantially lower emitters of carbon across their lifetime when compared to both fossil fuel and electric cars.

E-bikes are also lower emitters of particulate pollution than electric cars, having a positive impact of local air pollution levels.

As well as reducing pollution, e-bikes can have positive health impacts. ‘Enabling more people to commute to work using e-bikes would increase life-expectancy and reduce absenteeism, with a potential health economic benefit of £2.2 billion per year,’ according to the #BikeIsBest report.

‘Because of their potential to reduce the physical exertion of cycling and therefore overcome barriers of fitness, topography, and proximity of housing to employment and other activities, users of e-bikes can encompass a wider diversity of age, gender, physical fitness and economic demographics than conventional bicycles.’

The full report is available here.

Photo by Wolfram Bölte


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