The automobile has a much larger environmental impact than many consider. From the very start of production an automobile begins to add toxins to the waterways and the air around us and depletes the earth of natural resources. Take an objective look at your car or the next one you have the opportunity to ride in. There are all the parts under the hood, the body itself, fabric on the seats, carpeting on the floor, electronics and computer parts, just to start the list. Then there are all the fluids that make that car run hopefully for decades; oil, transmission fluid, brake fluid, antifreeze and wiper fluid to name a few.
So what alternative do we have in transportation? One method has received a huge resurgence in the last few years is the simple bicycle. But bikes sharing the road with cars has been very dangerous. As more people are preoccupied with cell phones, take out food, and other distractions, they miss seeing a bicycle.
One city shows it is possible for the two modes of transportation to co-exist. Portland, Oregon.
My good news this week is that Portland, which has a huge bicycling population reported Zero bicycle fatalities in 2013. But this fact is further shadowed by the fact that this is the 6th year the city of Portland was able to report zero fatalities.
Let’s learn from Portland and make every city and town accessible by alternative means of safe transportation.
Do you live where it is possible to manage without a car? What good news have you heard this past week?