Car vs Bicycle CO2 Carbon Footprint

Car vs Bicycle C02 Carbon Footprint

The real question is does bike commuting impact the carbon footprint.

Japan, China, the Netherlands, and Denmark collect the most data on carbon emissions and bikeable cities.

The Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP), cited by Streets blog, studied how biking could reduce carbon emissions by a substantial amount.

Six percent of bikes and e-bikes travels our world cities. If by 2050, e-bikes and bikes make up 14% of travel then there would be a 11% reduction in carbon footprint.

Type of Transit

CO2 Released (per km driven per person)

CO2 During Productuon Of Vehicle








16g(this is from the fuel from the rider - food)


Need more statistics

Click here European Cyclists Federation

Total of 16g of CO2 is produced from biking according to the table above. CO2 could be reduced even more due to diet. As in eating less meat which has a higher CO2 factor.

The production of cars show to be much higher in the CO2 factor. A car produces 313g of CO2 vs 16g of CO2 for a bicycle.

They cause congestion on the road ways resulting in more CO2 emissions. Most trips made in a car could be replaced by bicycling.

Here is some suggestions from the ITDP (Institute for Transportation and Development Policy) if we are really serious about lowering the CO2 emissions.

  • Develop infrastructure for bicycles
  • Revising laws to protect cyclists and pedestrians
  • Coordinating regional land use planning with transportation investments
  • Do more walking
  • Have more alternatives for transportation that does not use fossil fuels as in walking, solar,  electric, ect.

These alternatives are important if we are to achieve our goals of lowering the CO2 carbon emissions.

Then we have environment benefits. Bike riding uses minimal fossil fuels and is a pollution-free mode of transport. Bikes reduce the need to build, service and dispose of cars.

When making these large scale changes we need to implement infrastructure that will support the behavior changes if we are going to achieve less carbon emissions.

I found this discussion very interesting and in- lighting. Yes I would like to continue this discussion at a later time. So stay tune for a continuation.

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