Friday, August 21, 2009

Motorized bicycles

Making cars more fuel-efficient is not the best way to reduce energy consumption. In the first place, proper town planning will go a long way towards reducing daily travel needs. However, as town planning is not something that can happen overnight, the next best thing to do is to have a more efficient means of transport. In my opinion, a motorized bicycle will be a great boon. It does not require much investment and it is not a high-tech solution. Anybody who knows how to ride a bicycle should be able to handle a bicycle that is fitted with an small electric or a gas-powered motor. Local laws and legislation can be enacted to handle widespread use of this vehicle, which I propose should not require any licensing. A network of bicycle paths incorporating rest areas, toilets, and rain shelters are something that can be built in all districts. Indeed, local councils should be challenged to take responsibility for implementing a good network of bicycle paths. This will also encourage people to take longer walks to school or to work, furthering a lower dependence on cars.

If the above sounds appealing to you, why is the state government not doing this? Instead we see the government spending millions and millions of tax dollars on studies and consultation fees to find ways to reduce congestion, to reduce carbon emission, or to build more toll roads. While the government is willing to give subsidies for building a more fuel-efficient car, it seems to have overlooked a more obvious solution. Perhaps there is no money in making a better bicycle.

No comments: