Friday, June 1, 2012

U.S. Bicyclists Save $4.6 Billion Per Year by Riding, Instead of Driving
New data released on May 12, 2012 by the League of American Bicyclists, Sierra Club, and National Council of La Raza (NCLR) highlights the ... economic benefits of bicycling and its importance as a safe transportation choice....

The fact sheet release coincided with ... National Bike to Work Day, when millions of U.S. residents participated in hundreds of events across the country.

Among the new and key data highlighted in the fact sheet:
  • Bicyclists in the U.S. save $4.6 billion per year by riding, instead of driving
  • If American drivers replaced just one four-mile car trip with a bike each week for the whole year, it would save more than 2 billion gallons of gas....

More Americans are choosing to bicycle for transportation, but government funding of safe bicycling projects is not keeping up. Though biking and walking account for 12 percent of all trips in the U.S., these transportation modes receive only 1.6 percent of federal transportation spending....

The average annual operating cost of a bicycle is $308 — versus $8,220 for the average car.  New analysis by the League of American Bicyclists shows that bicyclists in the United States save at least $4.6 billion each year by not driving.  Forty percent of all trips are made within two miles of home. Analysis by the Sierra Club shows that if American drivers were to make just one four-mile round trip each week with a bicycle instead of a car, they would save nearly 2 billion gallons of gas. At $4 per gallon, total savings would be $7.3 billion a year.

Investing in bicycle infrastructure is cost-effective. For $60 million — the cost of a single mile of urban highway — the new city-wide bicycle network earned Portland, OR, the highest possible platinum rating as a Bicycle Friendly Community.

More Americans are choosing to bicycle for everyday transportation. Between 2000 and 2010, the number of bicycle commuters grew 40 percent nationwide.  That growth was even greater — 77 percent — in the
largest Bicycle Friendly Communities, as identified by the League of American Bicyclists.  More than 80 percent of Americans support maintaining or increasing federal funding for biking and walking,
Bike factsheet

Furthermore 33 percent of Americans do not drive at all.

The average American household spends more —16 percent of their budget — on transportation than on  food or healthcare.  Low-income families spend as much as 55 percent of their household budgets on transportation. Transportation options such as bicycling reduce those costs.

For additional information, data and events go to

Source: The Sierra Club

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