It’s a common question to wonder if eBikes are good for the environment. They aren’t as bad as a car, but what effects do they have on the environment? In this blog, we will explain how eBikes are a sustainable alternative to other modes of transportation.
eBikes are good for the environment because they use a combination of electric and human power to run. You might be wondering, “what about the power it takes to charge the bike?” Unfortunately, we know that it takes energy to charge your eBike. However, according to Cynergy eBikes, “Depending on the capacity of the battery, it will usually take 500-800 watt hours (0.4 - 0.8 kilowatt hours) to charge the battery. Assuming a rate of $0.10/kWh, it will cost you 5-8 cents for a charge that will last you 20-80+ miles.”
Another option to charge your eBike is with solar power, making it a 100% eco-friendly transportation option. With relaxed pedaling, you can expect 35-100 miles on a single charge for most eBikes. The range is impacted by battery type, terrain, wind and level of assist used. Keep in mind that eBikes are relatively new to society. The design and effectiveness of batteries will continue to improve over time.
Alternative to Driving
Since eBikes use assistive pedaling technology, you can ride longer because you aren’t exerting as much power as you would on a regular bike. Therefore, it’s a great alternative to driving short distances. Perhaps you can opt for biking to the grocery store when you only need a few things, to coffee with a friend, or taking the kids to school. Short trips are more reasonable to bike than drive. Plus, by choosing to bike over drive, you can save money on gas.
eBikes are great for long drives too. One of our owners, Lori Logan, used to bike about 22 miles each way, 45 miles round trip to her office and it would take approximately the same amount of time as driving. Her office was in downtown Denver so she was eliminating time sitting in traffic by getting exercise instead.
A recent study says that “carbon emissions could be reduced by 12 percent if just 15 percent of urban transportation miles traveled were instead made by e-bike.”
Minimal Effect on the Environment
Unlike other modes of transportation, eBikes don’t produce any carbon emissions or exhaust while in use, therefore not contributing to air pollution.
The batteries are long-lasting and will last several years until it needs to be replaced. They are made with materials that don’t dangerously affect the environment, unlike cars. They are made from lithium ions and don’t contain lead. eBike batteries can also be recycled.
Even driving to the gym has an effect on the environment. With an eBike, you can bike to the gym, or replace the gym entirely and transform your ride into an exercise routine. Plus, you would be saving money on your gym membership.
With the assisted pedaling feature, you are able to ride longer, which means you are burning more calories. Since you are exercising while riding an eBike, you can lose weight. The average calories burned is about 500 per hour. Of course, it all depends on your current health, terrain, and speed.
eBikes are no strangers to dealing with legislation challenges. Some states regulate eBikes with mopeds and motor vehicles and therefore are required to follow the same laws. However, there have also been some important laws to encourage the treatment and expectations of eBikes to be similar to regular bikes. More and more states are doing so, as seen in the picture below.
US Congressman, Jimmy Panetta, pitched the Electric Bicycle Incentive Kickstart for the Environment (E-BIKE) Act to Congress in February 2020. “The E-BIKE Act tax incentive covers 30 per cent of the e-bike cost, up to the value of $1,500, and would either offset the purchaser's taxes owed or be added to their tax refund for the year in which it was purchased.” By introducing this tax break, people will have an option to reduce their carbon footprint and fight the climate crisis without breaking the bank.
As mentioned before, eBikes are evolving and improving. Recently, eBike manufacturers have started using aluminum or carbon in the frame. This makes the eBike lighter and reduces the stress on the electric motor, making it last longer. Additionally, the battery is being integrated into the frame to protect it from dirt, dust, and water. We will continue to see new advancements as eBikes rise in popularity.
eBikes are environmentally friendly and can be a great alternative to driving short distances. As advancements in eBike manufacturing are integrated into society, we will likely see a drastic decrease in environmental concerns due to more sustainable models of eBikes and more people opting to bike instead of drive.
If you’re ready to reduce your carbon footprint, shop our eBikes.