A Method to Save Money, Stay Healthy, and Be Sustainable

by Joseph Cho on April 28, 2014

Let’s talk about the three things that almost universally everyone wants, but can’t get enough of in one way or the other: money, good health, and being sustainable. Little needs to be said to justify the desirability of these three. Who wouldn’t want to get all three of these things at the same time? With a little bit of effort, it isn’t too difficult to get all three of these things at the same time. The magic solution: Biking.

Intuitively, everyone knows biking can save you money. But just how much money are we talking? According to one article, the number is hard to say due to different makes, models, and year of ownership. Data says that the value can range from as cheap as $6,500 a year for a family sedan, to $21,500 a year for an upscale BMW. Other factors to include in costs are insurance, fuel, interest, maintenance/repairs, and depreciation. No matter what the conclusion, you can safely assume that skimping out on car bills and utilizing bikes can save at least thousands of dollars a year.

A comparison of different transportation systems and carbon emissions. Link: http://usa.streetsblog.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/dave.jpg

A comparison of different transportation systems and carbon emissions. Link: http://usa.streetsblog.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/dave.jpg

In the face of a rising obesity epidemic, methods to maintain physical activities are becoming crucial to reduce obesity prevalence. While the fault lies in no one, some barriers to reducing obesity lie within the American culture itself. A consumerist mindset pushes people to continuously buy cars, the prevalence of office jobs in urban settings promote hours of inactivity, and the popularity of meat with fast food promotes high saturated fat and sugar diets. Instilling motivation is not an easy task. Even when faced with the reality of obesity, changing dietary and physical habits is as difficult as convincing addicts to quit any other drug. Bikes are a potential option because they provide more than the incentive of “staying healthy”, they provide wealth and sustainability as well.

Sustainability. Clearly, the lack of gas consumption ends up reducing the carbon footprint. An estimate by the Adventure Cycling Association claims that with a moderate increase of 1 to 3 miles of biking/walking in exchange for driving can reduce carbon footprints by 6 to 14 million tons of CO2. Some argue that bikes aren’t as environmentally friendly as they seem. Biking undeniably has its environmental costs due to maintenance, production, and parts that end up going to landfill. However, according to The Guardian the average mid-sized car costs more than 17 tons of CO2. This is about 75 times that of what it costs to produce a typical car.

Sources:

http://consumerreports.org/cro/2012/12/what-that-car-really-costs-to-own/index.htm

http://usa.streetsblog.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/dave.jpg

http://www.adventurecycling.org/routes-and-maps/us-bicycle-route-system/implement-a-us-bike-route/benefits-and-building-support/environmental-impact/

http://www.adventurecycling.org/routes-and-maps/us-bicycle-route-system/implement-a-us-bike-route/benefits-and-building-support/environmental-impact/


{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: