The bicycle is a highlight in sustainable mobility and urban transport. But not only that, it has also been shown to save lives.
With 0% CO2 emissions, bicycles can really reduce the environmental impact, not only physical health (ver post), mental health (ver post), but also for the benefit of our economy. The data is clear: the bicycle is the only environmentally friendly vehicle, a sustainable means of transport that guarantees a return to economic activity while retaining the "benefits" of confinement.
The COVID-19 pandamic shows us the enormous positive effects of reducing pollution due to the reduction in motor vehicle traffic and industrial activity. A study by the Stanford University (ver estudio) examines the data on virus mortality in China and compares it with the health benefits of children and the elderly by reducing gas emissions. The conclusion is surprising: by reducing pollution, the coronavirus is said to have “saved” almost 20 times more lives than people who died from COVID-19.
Obviously, a virus causes serious economic consequences, in many cases human loss, but we maintain the positive part of this overall situation, the environmental benefits that National Geografic also refers to in this artículo.
However, not all countries consider bicycles to be one of the most efficient means of transport to fight coronavirus infections.
Studies show that emissions in China, one of the most contaminated countries, have been reduced by up to 25%, or in Germany between 50 and 120 tons less CO2. However, Greenpeace emphasizes that despite this very important but temporary decline, the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere has continued to increase. So, except for one of the biggest sanitary crises, another fight for our health must be followed ... the fight against climate change.
In Spain, in addition to sports bicycles, people who cycle to work have been prosecuted for weeks. Fortunately, the Minister of Health, Salvador Illa, considers the bike to be one of the perfect solutions to get to work as soon as “confinement” relaxes.
"It is important to keep social distance of 1 or 2 meters, so it is better to go to work on foot, by bicycle, or in a private vehicle, so these minimum distances are always guaranteed," said Illa.
However, one of the highlights was the reaction of the Spanish government to the decision by the French authorities to promote the bicycle as the main means of transport after “confinement”. Fourth Vice President and Minister of Environment, Teresa Ribera, admitted that they are studying how the bicycle can be used as a measure of mobility after the COVID-19 crisis. "It seems like a great idea and a great opportunity in a clearly different mobility framework," she said on her Twitter account, referring to the actions of the French government.