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Green Junction by Julie Peller Ph.D. ~ More outdoor time, less noise pollution and better mental health.

Green Junction For many cities, the highest source of carbon dioxide emissions stem from the transportation sector. To reduce a city’s carbon footprint, changes involving more public transportation, electric charging stations and shorter work weeks are being implemented. In Denver, Colorado, electronic bikes (e-bikes – limited to 1 horsepower or 750 W) have been added to the list of actions to reduce carbon emissions. The city invested over 7 million dollars for e-bike rebates over the past two years, leading to thousands more e-bikes on the road.  The company Ride Report, “a shared mobility management platform helping cities launch, manage, and evaluate shared scooter, bike, and car programs” partnered with the city of Denver to assess the benefits of electronic bike transportation.  The data indicate that e-bike owners drive less and have saved money in fuel expenses, an estimated collective savings of about 1 million dollars. Additionally, the program cut over 2000 metric tons of carbon dioxide in 2022.      The e-bike incentive tracker, managed by Portland State University’s Transportation Research and Education Center, has determined that over 160 e-bike discount programs have been proposed or launched in North America. According to Alex Bigazzi, an engineering professor at the University of British Columbia who researches e-bikes, the greatest benefits from e-bikes are improved public health, reclaimed street space and enhanced equity of mobility. Other benefits can include saving money, more outdoor time, less noise pollution and better mental health. It is time to make plans for more bike lanes!

Julie Peller, Ph.D., is an environmental chemist (Professor of Chemistry at Valparaiso University ). She has been writing a weekly column called The Green Junction for the past seven years and is helping to move the call of Laudato Si to action forward. Her Research Interests are advanced oxidation for aqueous solutions, water quality analyses, emerging contaminants, air quality analyses, Lake Michigan shoreline challenges (Cladophora, water, and sediment contaminants), and student and citizen participation in environmental work.  

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