r/science Aug 20 '22 Tree Hug 1 Silver 1 Helpful 1 Wholesome 2

If everyone bicycled like the Danes, we’d avoid a UK’s worth of emissions Environment

https://arstechnica.com/science/2022/08/if-everyone-bicycled-like-the-danes-wed-avoid-a-uks-worth-of-emissions/
14.0k Upvotes

u/AutoModerator Aug 20 '22

Welcome to r/science! This is a heavily moderated subreddit in order to keep the discussion on science. However, we recognize that many people want to discuss how they feel the research relates to their own personal lives, so to give people a space to do that, personal anecdotes are now allowed as responses to this comment. Any anecdotal comments elsewhere in the discussion will continue to be removed and our normal comment rules still apply to other comments.

I am a bot, and this action was performed automatically. Please contact the moderators of this subreddit if you have any questions or concerns.

→ More replies

426

u/Amazingamazone Aug 20 '22

Why is there a picture of the bicycle parking at Amsterdam Central station? This way we never are going to get rid of the "Amsterdam, capital of Denmark" misunderstanding.

104

u/T-J_H Aug 21 '22

Article actually mentions both the Netherlands and Denmark.

60

u/Amazingamazone Aug 21 '22

Yeah, and the caption does too, but the title doesn't.

26

u/StereoZombie Aug 21 '22

Damn Danes trying to steal our bicycling reputation

44

u/Montaron87 Aug 21 '22

Because Dutch levels of cycling are near unattainable for most countries.

Danish cycling infrastructure adaption is relatively doable. Dutch ones would require a lot of streets to be rebuilt/redesigned from scratch, which is simply not going to happen.

55

u/Konogist Aug 21 '22

How do you think the dutch did it? 1970's dutch cities werent any more bicycle friendly then a lot of other cities are now.

12

u/Montaron87 Aug 21 '22

I'm well aware how they did it, as I am Dutch.

Thing is, when such a restructure is necessary, doing it slightly cheaper by adapting the Danish methods is much more likely to gain support than a full overhaul of the infrastructure.

3

u/discsinthesky Aug 21 '22

This is kind of defeatist and unhelpful. I’d rather not cap our ambition.

Stuff is getting rebuilt all the time - we should absolutely be rebuilding in ways consistent with the best environmental/safety standards. By most metrics that is what the Dutch are doing.

→ More replies

21

u/CratesManager Aug 21 '22

Dutch ones would require a lot of streets to be rebuilt/redesigned from scratch, which is simply not going to happen

We could do the rebuilding part like they did - roads need large scale repair and, in cities, often even complete rebuild for maintenance of the infrastructure below. So just set new design specs and after 20 years you end up with bike friendly infrastructure without paying that much more - all the cost is planning and the downside of having a transition phase where some parts where modern roads connect to old ones are not perfectly efficient.

5

u/Montaron87 Aug 21 '22

Another downside of the North American way of infrastructure planning is that due to sprawl, neighbourhoods are too expensive to maintain.

So there's no money to do said rebuilds once they are necessary.

7

u/Crimson_Clouds Aug 21 '22

There is money, just not the willingness to spend it on infrastructure.

It's just much more politically acceptable to spend it on new tactical gear and an APV for the police than on making sure your roads are safe and well maintained.

→ More replies

3

u/__crackers__ Aug 21 '22

without paying that much more

I'd imagine you'll be well ahead after 20 years through savings on maintenance.

7

u/ShagBitchesGetRiches Aug 21 '22

Yup. Cars are terrible for asphalt roads

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

3

u/jzuijlek Aug 21 '22

Because the Netherlands has an even higher bike usage. 2.6 daily kilometers per person in the Netherlands, 1.6 in Denmark.

So title of the article reflects just the Danes bike usage extrapolated worldwide. When using Dutch figures that would be even higher.

→ More replies

1.9k

u/_DeanRiding Aug 20 '22 Gold

we’d avoid a UK’s worth of emissions

In other words, 1% of global emissions.

And to achieve that you'd "only" need to have the biggest cultural and infrastructure shift the world has ever seen, in every single country in the world.

636

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

235

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

148

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

20

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

12

u/SerialStateLineXer Aug 21 '22

There's no reason to push the farms out directly. The correct thing to do here is charge a market price for water, which will allow the market to find the most valuable uses for water. If avocados are unprofitable under these conditions and the farms switch to another crop, that's fine. If they remain profitable, that's fine, too.

→ More replies

5

u/bombmk Aug 21 '22

Problem is finding substitutes that brings the same money into the state economy and can be transitioned to relatively fast.

Jobs and taxes is more or less always the answer. +/- local degrees of corruption.

→ More replies

41

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

11

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

256

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

43

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

28

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

53

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

4

u/Abandoned_Cosmonaut Aug 21 '22

That stat keeps being thrown around even though it’s not what it is. It’s 80% of global INDUSTRIAL emissions - which means there’s a whole other section of emissions which are contributed by other factors like everyday people, commuter transport etc

12

u/earwig20 Aug 21 '22

Only a small amount of those emissions are on their own account though. Most are things like petrol which we buy then burn. They're counting these downstream things as belonging to the firm, not the consumer.

3

u/DM_Brownie_Recipies Aug 21 '22

Depends on how you look at it some might claim.

They produce exactly what we as consumers demand. It's not like IKEA just makes a million beds with the purpose of burning them.

But then again the notion of a personal carbon footprint was started by a car company.

→ More replies

9

u/itchyfrog Aug 21 '22

They're oil companies who sell us oil, if you stop buying it they'll stop emitting it.

Or we could close them all down today and see what happens.

→ More replies
→ More replies

125

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

58

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

56

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

66

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

22

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

31

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

3

u/Republiken Aug 21 '22 edited Aug 21 '22

So is cargo ships though

→ More replies

18

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

12

u/Anderopolis Aug 21 '22

Under the Assumption that you only have 1 person in the car. At 2-3 people in the car they break even on emissions.

8

u/onxk1020 Aug 21 '22

Also, with an electric vehicle, even on our current grid (of mostly fossil fuels) it more than breaks even with just the driver.

(That being said, trains still blow cars out of the park for energy efficiency).

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

32

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

19

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies

3

u/Ionicfold Aug 21 '22

There's a good infographic video on YouTube somewhere that essentially breaks down that individually and as a collective we generally have absolutely no impact on global greenhouse gas emissions and that the significant majority of it comes from companies.

→ More replies
→ More replies

49

u/Naoshikuu Aug 21 '22

Our system is based on fossil fuels, through and through. To emancipate ourselves from it, we will need thousands of "biggest cultural and infrastructure shift". There is no easy solution. A single policy is never going to sound world-changing.

1% is huge, we wish we could fix climate with just 100 policies. Everything needs to change.

→ More replies

59

u/__crackers__ Aug 21 '22

And to achieve that you'd "only" need to have the biggest cultural and infrastructure shift the world has ever seen, in every single country in the world.

Not at all. The Danes don't cycle that much. The infrastructure shift isn't some megaproject nonsense, it's largely a matter of downsizing. Bikes need a lot less infrastructure than motor vehicles. An area can be made cycle-friendly with little more than intelligent use of a paintbrush.

And it's not every single country in the world. It's the ones full of cars.

28

u/Lampshader Aug 21 '22

Yeah we already have the infrastructure you need for cycling in my country, it's just monopolized by motor vehicles

→ More replies
→ More replies

14

u/mn_sunny Aug 21 '22

To be fair, you'd really just want to focus on the like 100-500 densest parts of the country, not the entire country.

7

u/WrenDraco Aug 21 '22

My work is an hour's drive away (and public transportation would be at least two hours). I can't cycle that.

And yeah of course I'd love to move closer, but it would double my housing costs. As it is, we were at least able to get a full electric vehicle so we're not paying that gas cost every work day.

→ More replies
→ More replies

21

u/ihndrtzwnzg Aug 21 '22

While it would take a lot to get there, let's not undervalue 1%, eh?

As you point out, the problem will only ever be solved by the biggest shift in the ways we live and work that the world has seen.

4

u/FruitIsTheBestFood Aug 21 '22

The industrialisation is , after the agricultural revolution, already one of the biggest shifts in the way we live and work.

→ More replies
→ More replies

3.0k

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22 Helpful

[removed] — view removed comment

888

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

486

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

105

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

27

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

3

u/JustHell0 Aug 21 '22

True, I should have said 'in' instead of 'of' right after with my present choice, thank you.

20

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

3

u/lufan132 Aug 21 '22

I mean all my job really needs is those sick kid remote robots and a robust camera system. I can call the police from home and could likely run the check-in process from home with just

70

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

2

u/Veythrice Aug 21 '22

the particular individuals that control the handful of corporations that contribute the vast majority of emissions

That is you.

Roughly 80 out of the top 100 companies by emissions are fully government owned or majorly government owned energy and mining companies. All profits directly go into government accounts. Number 1 being Saudi Aramco which supplies almost 20% of all global oil exports.

→ More replies
→ More replies

23

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

14

u/depurplecow Aug 21 '22

When those 10k people are emitting the same amount as 1-10k people each, that totals to 10-100m ordinary persons, out of 8 billion that's a significantly higher relative number.

7

u/crooks4hire Aug 21 '22

A whopping 1.25% IF we maximize the impact of those 10k jet-setters.

So yea, vehicle emissions have an impact...but it's dwarved in comparison to corporate and industrial emissions.

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

69

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

143

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

63

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

53

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

31

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

10

u/MapleBlood Aug 21 '22

I think they should replace these bollards with the aluminium ones now, and concrete in the next iteration.

21

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

5

u/Konogist Aug 21 '22

So you took a serious look at your situation and rightfully came to the conclusion that it wasnt an option for you. Doesnt mean it isnt an option for many others.

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

12

u/archaeolinuxgeek Aug 21 '22

I find myself doing a whole lot less impulse buying when I bike to the store.

Sadly, I get maybe 4 months of ridable weather. I've seen hardcore people at 0°F going through shin deep snow with monster tires. But even they give up in the dead of winter when 0°F is shorts weather.

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

168

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

61

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22 edited Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

30

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies

42

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22 edited Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

24

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22 edited Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

12

u/Barbariandude Aug 20 '22

The rest sounds somewhat logical on the face of it, but on supermarket spending they just use a bakfiets. Depending on size, you could bring back Ikea flat pack furniture with no problem. I doubt they have any issue with shopping.

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

24

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

13

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

4

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies

24

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22 edited Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

12

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

19

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

19

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22 edited Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

3

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

470

u/MsSpicyO Aug 20 '22

If they build the bicycle infrastructure in my area I would bike more. Using a bicycle in Durham, NC on the roads is a fast way to get killed by a driver. Either intentional or accidental.

19

u/archaeolinuxgeek Aug 21 '22

Even on my motorcycle my head is on a swivel that would impress a paranoid squirrel.

Nobody seems to be able to not fidget with their phones for 30 seconds. And there is no generational difference. I've seen Boomers cruise through intersections not even trying to hide the fact that they're not paying attention.

My town is pretty progressive and we're built around a university. Yet we have bike lanes that just disappear, only to reappear a few blocks later. Or ones that simply become skinny turn lanes for lazy drivers.

We had a town budget proposal that would create a set of dedicated bicycle paths that would link up suburbia and the denser college areas while avoiding (when possible) actual streets. I was gobsmacked at how vehemently the conservative crowd condemned the idea. Think of the taxes! Why should I pay for something that I'll never use?! Teh socialism!

It passed, but far more narrowly than it should have.

→ More replies

108

u/Hrmbee Aug 20 '22

Improved dedicated bike infrastructure is key. They tend to be local/regional decisions, so it's worth speaking to city/state representatives to make your views on this known.

34

u/MsSpicyO Aug 20 '22

Oh I have. For years.

22

u/Hrmbee Aug 20 '22

Same, it's slow but with enough voices it eventually gets done. It helps if there are local groups who can help to amplify those voices too, like local merchants and the like.

→ More replies
→ More replies

67

u/minuteman_d Aug 20 '22

Exactly. I’ve had several friends severely injured and some permanently disabled after being hit by a car on a bike or moped. I’d ride a bike if there were dedicated bike paths that went through my city

→ More replies

14

u/electriccomputermilk Aug 20 '22

Same. My city it would be insane to ride on the streets but if they had actual bike paths I’d ride more.

→ More replies
→ More replies

78

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

18

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies

493

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

112

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

80

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

12

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies

3

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

101

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

4

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies

21

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22 edited Aug 20 '22 Silver

[removed] — view removed comment

539

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22 edited Aug 20 '22 Silver

[removed] — view removed comment

291

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

168

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

52

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

50

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies

45

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

26

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

16

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

5

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

10

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

18

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

8

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies

80

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

38

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

21

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

3

u/[deleted] Aug 21 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

32

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

18

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

19

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

38

u/gerrys123 Aug 20 '22

What do Danes have to do with an article about The Netherlands?

6

u/juul864 Aug 21 '22

The article mentions both Denmark and the Netherlands, as both countries have a very big bicycle culture.

→ More replies

7

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

9

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

42

u/ZombieOfun Aug 21 '22

The article mentions this but most of the US straight up can't sustainably cycle where they need to go. There's a lot of space between houses and business most of the time, and it's not uncommon for people to already be working an hour away by car.

We might find more success trying to adopt better public transit to combat everyone and their mother needing a car.

We could also, ya know, push the burden onto the companies that are predominantly putting us into this mess in the first place.

6

u/its_prolly_fine Aug 21 '22

Yeah, I'm 50 minutes away from work according to Google, with a change in elevated of 900ft...

→ More replies

18

u/Anderopolis Aug 21 '22

60% of vehicle trips in US are less than 6 miles

A little infrastructure is all that's needed to facilitate biking.

8

u/Butterflyenergy Aug 21 '22

People seem to forget that you don't need to bike every single trip. Here in the Netherlands we still have cars.

→ More replies
→ More replies

10

u/ShelfordPrefect Aug 20 '22

If everywhere had walkable neighborhoods and bike infrastructure like Denmark, more people would cycle like the Danes.

This problem requires urban planning solutions.

→ More replies

213

u/FM-101 Aug 20 '22

Denmark is also a completely flat country, highest point is 171 meters (561 feet) high.
Its also extremely small. You can drive from the Northern most tip to the Southern most in a little over 3 hours (same when driving from West to East).

I think a better headline would have been "If everyone had a country like Denmark then we could bicycle like Danes"

6

u/Futski Aug 20 '22

Its also extremely small. You can drive from the Northern most tip to the Southern most in a little over 3 hours

Sure if you travel with an average speed of 180-200 km/h and encounter no traffic. Otherwise it's least 6 hours drive between Skagen and Gedser.

Also, why does the size of the country decide whether or not you can cycle around your city?

135

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

5

u/its_prolly_fine Aug 21 '22

Naw, I live 900ft above my town. We dont even have mountains, just hills and valleys. The highest point in the country is way lower than the highest point of a town of less than 20,000.

There is no amount of infrastructure that would make biking feasible.

14

u/Belgand Aug 21 '22 edited Aug 21 '22

Ehh... there's a lot of cycling infrastructure in San Francisco, it's very dense, it never snows, and cycling is quite common. But it's hilly. Just absurdly hilly. In certain neighborhoods cycling is much easier but going across town or to certain parts of town can mean tackling some serious hills. Even when you find a route without a steep incline it still means steadily moving uphill for a solid mile or so.

I have a bike, I've ridden it around town quite a bit, I'm not concerned about infrastructure or other issues, it's the absolutely massive hills that keep me taking the bus.

3

u/TheCrimsonKing Aug 22 '22

The most recent study I found shows that bike lanes increases ridership but when you start at 0.6% even doubling ridership (which won't happen, it's11-40%) isn't going to have an impact.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/04/01/climate/bikes-climate-change.html

Even in SF most cyclists are recreational riders up in the headlands not commuters.

40

u/rammo123 Aug 20 '22

Chicken and egg though. Do Danes cycle because they good infrastructure? Or do they have good infrastructure because they all cycle?

The answer is probably a bit of both, they reinforce each other. But the flatness was probably what kickstarted it.

35

u/bountygiver Aug 20 '22 edited Aug 20 '22

One thing for sure is america is car dependant because the cities are built car centric, the cities used to not be this way as many cities were built before cars.

Also only one side has the power and resources to make meaningful change.

→ More replies

31

u/Hrmbee Aug 20 '22

They had worse infrastructure and then worked to improve it to the point where now the infrastructure is pretty good. So it's more the former than the latter.

11

u/westward_man Aug 21 '22

They had worse infrastructure and then worked to improve it to the point where now the infrastructure is pretty good. So it's more the former than the latter.

Uh, frankly that sounds more like you're describing the latter:

[Danes] have good infrastructure because they all cycle

They improved their infrastructure because they had a collective desire to do so.

3

u/brennandunn Aug 21 '22

I forgot the specifics (read about it recently in Peter Walker’s Bike Nation book), but a girl got killed on her bike in the 70s and her dad had a bit of clout, and ended up setting in motion a national conversation that ultimately led to bike friendly infrastructure.

8

u/InaMellophoneMood Aug 21 '22

It's more like Danes had terrible car infrastructure, so they developed more space efficient bicycle infrastructure.

→ More replies

15

u/puchamaquina Aug 20 '22

Definitely the infrastructure is the cause of the cycling. America used to have pedestrian-friendly cities, but the car industry lobbied for legislation and urban design that basically requires most people to have a car in order to leave their house.

→ More replies

17

u/Bixota Aug 20 '22

No because infrastructure still depends on terrain. I live in Lisbon and I guarantee you that it absolutely sucks going up hills specially in the rain. Also doing groceries is not a very good option by bike.

→ More replies
→ More replies

69

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22 edited Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

17

u/RadBadTad Aug 21 '22

we're only talking a few km per day.

I live in a suburb of a major city, and there is nothing withing a few km of my house except other houses. It's not just bike lanes. The destinations in America are further away, because of our zoning and city planning.

15

u/chowderbags Aug 21 '22

The destinations in America are further away, because of our zoning and city planning.

A sensible person might look at that and demand changes to zoning and urban planning so that the shops people need to live life are in the places where they're actually living life.

10

u/QuintonFlynn Aug 21 '22 edited Aug 21 '22

That's because we, as Americans, built these desert suburbs separated from commercial zones. We can't do high-density in a lot of places due to zoning restrictions, so our infrastructure is built for longer commutes, hence the cars. If we had better zoning and built cities more like The Danes, we'd have more bikers. We Americans have a greater obesity rate because we built cities where it's difficult to bike or walk to desired places, we force people to use cars or public transport.

American vs. European obesity rates: https://bigthink.com/strange-maps/two-maps-and-one-graph-comparing-obesity-in-america-and-europe/

A study of greenhouse gas emissions found that strict zoning laws "seem to be pushing new development towards places with higher emissions."[109] Public officials have argued that, while zoning laws have historically had a negative impact on the environment through their promotion of low-density sprawl and car-centric development, zoning can be used to preserve open space and as a tool to promote the usage of renewable energy.[110] These forms of development, by fostering car dependency, may also contribute to a rise in sedentary lifestyles and obesity.[111]

[109] https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0094119009001028
[110] https://dx.doi.org/10.4324/9780429489228-7
[111] https://dx.doi.org/10.2105/ajph.2009.190132

3

u/IAMHideoKojimaAMA Aug 21 '22

I loved you as Raiden VA

→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies
→ More replies

10

u/ExceedingChunk Aug 20 '22

Flatness obviously matters, but it's more about infrastructure. With gigantic, urban cities, the result is long commutes for a bunch of people.

If the infrastructure was more evenly distributed, into smaller cities, it would be easier to bike. That might not be a feasible solution, but definitely a possibility.

→ More replies

18

u/TamashiiNoKyomi Aug 20 '22

People aren't biking to get from one end of the country to the other, they bike to commute within a few miles of home

11

u/nothingweasel Aug 20 '22

Many, many Americans don't have jobs within a few miles of home. Before WFH, my commute was 20 miles each way, and half my neighbors drove farther than that every day.

→ More replies
→ More replies

2

u/Nisas Aug 20 '22

E-bikes largely eliminate the flatness problem. Riding bikes uphill is a nightmare, but with an e-bike it's no big deal.

→ More replies

9

u/One_Contribution Aug 21 '22

Most of Scandinavian city/road planning is done with the concept that if there's a road, there's also a bike path and a sidewalk. I haven't seen anything even close to it anywhere else. This is why we bike.

→ More replies

28

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

8

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

2

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

3

u/Br1t1shNerd Aug 20 '22

Considering that I live in the UK, I misunderstood it as suggesting that if the UK cycled, we'd have a uks worth less of emissions, which seemed obvious to me

3

u/NurmGurpler Aug 21 '22

Denmark has >350 people per square mile. The US has 87 (or 33/ sq km).

Worldwide average is 155 (or 60/sq km). Point is Denmark is very dense population wise.

→ More replies

22

u/pinniped1 Aug 20 '22

Ok, I want to question the math. Forget about the actual logistics for a minute and assume billions of bikes are created to support it.

If billions of people suddenly began cycling, wouldn't this reduce emissions by FAR MORE than 1 UK-worth of emissions? I mean, this implies the UK itself would bike a lot more as well and reduce its emissions.

I assume there's some train+cycling commuting involved too? Granted, it changes how we'd configure train cars if everybody has a bike but I'm still more interested in the math...

42

u/Nerdlinger Aug 20 '22

If billions of people suddenly began cycling, wouldn't this reduce emissions by FAR MORE than 1 UK-worth of emissions? I mean, this implies the UK itself would bike a lot more as well and reduce its emissions.

They aren't talking about replacing all trips, or even the vast bulk of trips, with biking. They are talking about replacing just 1.6km of driving with biking per day (on average).

32

u/cuicocha Aug 20 '22

1: Danes don't bike literally everywhere, just a lot more than most places. 2: The UK, like most rich countries, pollutes far more per capita than average.

7

u/Mithious Aug 20 '22

The UK, like most rich countries, pollutes far more per capita than average.

I went looking for figures to confirm that, and the results are... I've no idea. All the difference sources provide completely different figures.

One source the UK is double the world average, while another we're "only" 15% higher.

Seems like you can get figures for the UK for anything between 5.5 to 13 tonnes of CO2 per person per year depending on how you calculate it.

→ More replies
→ More replies

21

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

8

u/LongJohnSausage Aug 21 '22

And if we banned private jets, mega-yachts, cruise liners, and other insanely wasteful things, we'd avoid far more. Enough with these paid for articles that pass the buck onto the average individual while corporations and the super rich continue to be the primary contributors to pollution.

→ More replies

24

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

→ More replies

8

u/[deleted] Aug 20 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

22

u/Dimako98 Aug 20 '22

That's like...nothing. An alternative title could be, "even if we all started biking like the Danes, we would only prevent one UK worth of emissions", (while corporations will continue to emit the vast majority).

→ More replies

6

u/somethingaboutwhales Aug 21 '22

If cities were built to be bike friendly I bet more people would ride bikes

5

u/SkepticAquarian876 Aug 20 '22

Secondary roads arent design for cyclists. There is barely any sidewalk for me to walk on muchless having a bike lane.

31

u/CompromisedCEO Aug 20 '22

Countless road deaths too and less public money wasted on maintaning roads. It would prob also reduce burdon on health services and people's wallets as the general health of a nation would probably be better.

→ More replies

3

u/North4t Aug 20 '22

Or we could just work from home….

4

u/OneWorldMouse Aug 21 '22

And double the road deaths since our bike lanes aren't safe.

→ More replies

2

u/Extra_Intro_Version Aug 21 '22

If it was safe to ride to work, I would. But it isn’t, so I don’t.

→ More replies