Following the shocking findings of the IPCC Report, it is now almost universally accepted that without significant action, we will feel the most catastrophic effects of climate breakdown within decades. It’s a bleak picture, but it is still within our power to change course.
COP26 – the Climate Change Conference taking place in Glasgow from 31 October – will be a pivotal event: The decisions made there will change the course of history - for better or worse. While bold ‘green’ policies are needed to avert the crisis, we can’t just leave it up to politicians and lobbyists. There are effective actions that ‘ordinary people’ can take to make a difference - right now - within our own communities.
There is hope!
The National Travel Survey found that around 70% of everyday trips are under 5 miles – a distance that can be easily cycled at a leisurely pace in under 30 minutes. Almost a quarter of the daily journeys we make are under 1 mile.
If we switched some of our weekly trips from the car to a bike, we would save thousands of tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions – making our neighbourhoods quieter, cleaner and healthier places to live for ourselves, our children and our grandchildren.
Reaching the cycling tipping point
The more people choose to cycle; the more local decision-makers are encouraged to improve facilities for cyclists, such as traffic-free cycle routes, secure cycle parking and green spaces. This in turn makes it easier for people to discover the joys of cycling - and so the environmental benefits multiply!
Of course, the benefits for the environment are fantastic, but the benefits to you – your physical and mental health – are also incredible! Staying active improves your mood, reduces stress and helps with anxiety. It can also be a great way to meet people locally and discover more about your local area. And vital for many after the pandemic: Cycling more will save you money!
So what can we do?
At Life Cycle UK our mission is to help people to overcome the barriers to cycling. Whether that’s getting your hands on an affordable bike, confidence-boosting cycle lessons or learning to maintain your own bike - we are here at every stage of your cycling journey. And because we believe that no one should be excluded from cycling by their age, ability, sexuality, gender, ethnicity or income, our projects are set up to be inclusive to everyone.
We understand that getting into cycling is a personal journey, so we work hard to provide services tailored to each individual. But the beauty of cycling goes far beyond the personal: Choosing to cycle more often is a wonderful way to care for your community and our planet.