We can see them frequently at the cycling routes in Bogotá.
Bicycles with with gas engines can be seen every day at the cycling routes of Bogotá. Most of them are riders moving lunches and other stuff to homes. They carry big bags at their backs and probably work many hours each day.
Cycling routes were built worldwide for various purposes; to improve the traffic in congested cities, to reduce the use of motor vehicles, to reduce the greenhouse emission gases and the noise, among other reasons. They were utimately conceived to make the bicycle a frequent transport mean for many citizens. Cities would become nicer, healthier and sustainable for them and their visitors.
Most of the bikers think that we contribute to that challenge besides we enjoy riding in our City and other cities we may visit.
However, the presence of gas motor bicycles in our routes subvert such purposes. They disturb cyclists and pedestrians with their noise and smoke. Those gas engine bicycles are heavier, carry oil, engines, exahust pipes usually very hot and they use to run faster. In case of an accident, they can cause severe damage.
If car and motor bike drivers don’t have the corresponding insurance (50% in Colombia), imagin how many gas engine cyclist have one.
Most of those gas engines are two stroke of 40 and 80 cc. They are very pollutant and noisy. Their combustion is uncomplete, releasing highly toxic smoke, poorly energy efficient and so very polluting. Their use is regulated, limited or forbidden in many countries.
It is regulated in Colombia, where gas engine bicycles CAN NOT ride through the extense cycling routes of Bogotá. Disposition No. 160/2017 from the Colombian Ministry of Transport.
The so called gas engine bicycles should be registered (RUNT), have available the correspoinding insurance (SOAT) and pass the periodic technical checks.
However, gas engine bicycles ride daily through the cycling routes of Bogotá, polluting its air, disturbing with their noise and smoke the other cyclists and pedestrians.
Gas engine bicycles represent the oposite of what bicycles mean for the cyclists and its use in the cities. If the regulation is systematically breached, their use, sale and distribution should be forbidden.
It is worth recalling that Colombia ratified on 12th July 2018 the Kyoto Protocol. Kyoto Protocol..
By such ratification, Colombia commit to the reduction of the greeenhouse emission gases of at least 5% to those registered in 1990. Colombia also signed the Paris Agreement to make all it is necessary to reduce those emission gases and pollution to stop the rising or global temperature which consequences are being catastrophic for all regions. Paris Agreement.
That was the commitment of the signing Governments who represent their respective countries, their politicians, entrepreneurs and citizens. The fight against the Climate Change and Pollution commit all of us globally and individually. All our daily actions should take that in consideration.
Unfortunately, since 1990 till today, we have not reduced our emission but same have increased more than 50%. CO2 Emissions since 1990. International Energy Agency.
Therefore, the challenge is even bigger as well as it should be our commitment and effort. When policies are not enough to solve the problema, then it is the effort of the people able to do it. It is in our hands to achieve it also in this case.
With repect to the electric bicycles which sales have boosted in the last year, we should know that today, when we plug in to charge our battery, the power used has been generated with more than 50% fossil Fuels, mainly coal and gas. Besides, battery manufacture is highly energy intensive based on coal. Global sources of power generation. International Energy Agency.
The electric bicycle is a cleaner vehicle compared to a gas engine one, but it is NOT the cleanest way to ride. Just keep that in mind!
Keep pedalling and of course, DO NOT put any gasoline on to your bicycle!