Want to lower greenhouse gas emissions, get fit, and create new jobs? Ride a bike.
That’s the finding of the first comprehensive study on Europe’s cycling industry, which details a cycling economy that employs more than 655,000 people in industries such as retail, manufacturing, infrastructure investment, and tourism.
On just two wheels, the industry is creating more jobs than Europe’s high-fashion footwear industry (388,000 jobs), its well-established steel sector (410,000), and the United States’ Big Three automobile companies (Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler) combined (510,000).
Holger Haubold, fiscal and economic policy officer at the European Cyclists’ Federation, which commissioned the study, said that cycling allows cities and countries to cut carbon emissions without hindering economic growth.
“The study shows that cities and communities should take into account the numerous benefits of cycling when making investment decisions in the field of mobility,” Haubold said. “It proves that these benefits do not only consist of reduced congestion, reduced CO2 emissions, improved air quality, or improvements in public health, but also of a boost in economic growth and the creation of jobs.”