Many people flinch when they see the price of the electric bikes in our shop; they range from $1599 to upwards of $4000 with the majority in the $2-$3k range. If you’re approaching ebikes as just the latest iteration of standard bikes then yes, the prices can seem daunting. The larger picture, however, is that ebikes are much more than that; they are a legitimate alternative transportation solution. Some have chosen an ebike over an automobile and are reaping the many rewards of that choice. I tip my hat to them daily.
Here’s a fun fact for you: commuting by electric bike delivers the equivalent of 570 mpg. Included in that number is the costs surrounding the food you eat as your own fuel, and the energy needed to charge the bike. If you’re really vigilant, and eat only food that has been locally grown, (no transportation costs involved) the number climbs to 710 mpg. If you’re an energy conscious hero and also generate your own electricity, (solar, wind, etc.) then the number raises to an amazing 1340 mpg. Bravo!
In the U.S. cars are driven over three trillion miles per year. 55% of all those trips are less than ten miles each. Even though that’s well within the range of an ebike rider only a few percentage of those trips are made by bike. In Copenhagen 35-40% of the population commutes by bike year round, even in winter. There is so much opportunity for more bicycle commuting here at home, and ebikes make it more possible. C’mon America, we can do better than this!
Infrastructure is another key element in this picture. We’re doing a good job and we can do better right here in Ashland. Let’s make safe space for bikes through the heart of downtown. Let’s continue to include bike infrastructure in all future development; this is a classic example of a “build it and they will ride” situation. How often do we get the opportunity to take positive action toward a healthier environment that, at the same time, provides so much fun? Let’s roll forward together with the green revolution that all life on Earth requires.