COVID-19 Prompts Countries to Re-Think Transportation for Sustainability

The days of crowded streets, trains, planes, and platforms may be a thing of the past. The global pandemic caused millions of people to stay home, thus reducing carbon emissions from transportation. The good news is that some countries took notice, and decided to create alternative options for when we all go back to work!

According to the World Economic Forum, “Britain could experience a transport revolution sparked by the coronavirus pandemic with up to 14 million people ready to swap cars for bikes, British Cycling believes.”

Britain is not alone! The World Resources Institute reports “Many urban cycling networks have seen a surge in traffic, including in China, Germany, Ireland, the United Kingdom and the United States.”

They also see long-term opportunities, starting with China as it re-opens from the pandemic. “It seems increasingly likely that this surge in biking is more than a temporary phenomenon. Evidence suggests that cyclists are riding longer distances directly to their final destinations, not just for first- and last-mile connections. Beijing cyclers average 2.4 kilometers per ride, a 69% increase from pre-pandemic.”

The World Resources Institute is also advocating for countries to continue to support biking with infrastructure investments “from protected lanes, to mass parking facilities to bikeshare programs — exactly the type of win-win investment that will help economies recover while curbing climate change, reducing air pollution and protecting human health.”

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