Living without owning an internal combustion engine

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
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al_yrpal
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby al_yrpal » 31 Jul 2019, 6:02pm

Ivor Tingting wrote:
amediasatex wrote:IF an eBike makes the difference between someone getting in a car and not it's worthwhile in my opinion.

They are not zero-impact, but they are vastly reduced compared to a car in both raw material, construction and ongoing impact, congestion, danger to other users, noise pollution, space occupation, and not to mention not belching out crap into the air we have to breathe in urban environments.

There are many people who are genuinely not fit or able enough to use a normal bicycle for many trips. And then a great many more who might use them for very short unladen trips, but wouldn't if it were further or they needed to carry anything, so they use a car instead, eBikes can and do work for those people.

Zero-impact is a laudible goal, but I'll take 100 eBikers leaving their car behind Vs 5 using a 'normal' bike and the other 95 staying in the car thank you.


People are just so ******* lazy and selfish. If they weren't then they wouldn't buy motor bicycles. Period. They'e in a bike shop. Non motorised conventional bicycle or motorised bicycle. Nah I can't be ****d to pedal all myself! Sod the environment I'll have an E-bike. So now millions of these things are being made pillaging the planet for more precious resources and precious metals destroying landscapes to make the motors and batteries for the selfish people who buy them. And how are motor bicycles recycled come the end of their lives? They will likely end up in a canal or at the bottom of the oceans creating an environmental disaster that was totally avoidable and attributable to peoples' sloth. I have ridden all my life and am now over 60. I will ride a conventional bicycle until I die and hopefully I have many decades left. I would not even contemplate riding a motorised bicycle. Protecting the planet is fundamental. To ride an E-bike motorised bicycle is totally at odds with traditional cycling.


Aint igororance bliss.... :lol:

Al
Touring on a bicycle is a great way to explore and appreciate the countryside and towns you pass through. What do you do to make a difference?

Greenbuilder
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby Greenbuilder » 31 Jul 2019, 6:10pm

I would like to thank the original poster for opening this very interesting and important discussion.
I managed without a car throughout the 1990's whilst living in the city (and running a bike shop); I did hire a van occasionally.
I now live in rural, hilly Cornwall and still cycle most days, but I also have an MTB converted to crank drive electric for going to shops/carrying tools and towing a trailer, we also have a 10 year old Prius Hybrid. My wife has a ebike as well, which she uses daily to carry materials for her business, instead of using the car.
Our next step is to trade the Hybrid car for a 100% electric car, now they are becoming affordable. Our energy supplier is 100% renewable, but it would be great to have pv panels on the roof.
A few rough calcs on ebikes; the 250 watt motor = 1/3 horsepower vs 100 hp for our car. They use 1/2 kWh to charge the battery = about 9 pence. Ebikes weigh 20kg, that's 1/50 the weight of the car. Steel or alloy ebikes probably last as long as the average car and are more easily recycled, even the Lithium Ion battery. By the way, try recycling a carbon fibre bike.
Recent survey I read from Evans cycles...ebike saved £7,700 over 5 years compared with same mileage by car.
Cycle to work scheme has now included ebikes.
I see them as a positive way to reduce reliance on cars, enable people in hilly areas to cycle to work (with assistance) and help people with health problems to get back to cycling.
There is a CLIMATE EMERGENCY!

GranvilleThomas
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby GranvilleThomas » 31 Jul 2019, 6:46pm

I am 58 yrs old and I have never owned a car because I never wanted to accidentally kill someone or poison children’s air with exhaust fumes and I have always preferred to spend money on wine and curry, rather than the costs of car ownership.

I do use public transport when I have to and because unfortunately the world is structured around the infernal combustion engine I realise how difficult it is to get to work and back without a car and transport a fridge.

A couple of years back, the job I had saw me cycling over the mountain from Cardiff at midnight in the rain and snow and ice and freezing fog with lunatics in cars speeding very closely past me at 60mph and youths screaming out of their windows and drunks on bus stops chasing me down the road (the human race are such an interesting species).

Not to mention the onset of diabetic neuropathology that was making my life hell in the leg area, I almost preyed (but not quite) for a car.

So I certainly understand that some people will still need a car to exist and I would not criticise these people, but I would strongly criticise our society for structuring things this way to fill the pockets of the few in our Capitalist world.

So, yes you can live life without owning an internal combustion engine, but you require the spirit of adventure in your soul and not everyone has, not to mention the problems brought on by 'old age'.

rmurphy195
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby rmurphy195 » 31 Jul 2019, 9:42pm

Tricky if you are into modelm aircraft flying !
Brompton, Condor Heritage, creaky joints and thinning white (formerly grey) hair
""You know you're getting old when it's easier to ride a bike than to get on and off it" - quote from observant jogger !

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Cugel
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby Cugel » 31 Jul 2019, 10:17pm

rmurphy195 wrote:Tricky if you are into modelm aircraft flying !


Tricky? Nonsense! Model gliders.

Once I went a-gliding-oh. It would be green except for the 360HP winch required for the launch. Still, a model one can probably be launched by hand, especially from the top of Catstycam or even The Pap of Glencoe.

Cugel

Brucey
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby Brucey » 31 Jul 2019, 11:10pm

the thing is that personal ownership (and moderate use) of an internal combustion engine is liable to represent only a tiny fraction of any single person's impact on the planet. There are other things that are likely to be far more important than that.


Image

from

https://whatsyourimpact.org/greenhouse-gases/carbon-dioxide-emissions

car use falls into the 'transportation' slice. Car manufacturer falls into the 'industry' slice and presumably the electricity and heat used when the car is made may fall into the heat/power slice.

within the transportation slice fall

-sea transport 14%
- air transport 11%
-road transport 72%

road transport includes trucks, buses taxis and private cars

You can see that the biggest slice is electricity and heat generation. This is heavily skewed per person such that if you live in an industrialised country it will be vastly higher per person than someone living in a pre-industrial society. It is arguably the case that individuals in countries that consume products that are not manufactured there effectively 'export pollution' to other countries. Furthermore if you live in the temperate/cold latitudes your energy footprint for heating/electricity is liable to be much greater too. In total if you live in North America or Northern Europe and live an 'ordinary' life you probably are responsible for several times the CO2 output per person vs the global average.

The energy tied up in the manufacture of a car (or an e-bike or an electric car) is signficant; if you use it to 'save energy/pollution' vs an alternative the alternative needs to be pretty bad and you need to be able to use the new one for a surprisingly long time before it 'pays for itself'.

Probably the most important things you can do if you live in the UK and want to be environmentally conscious are (in rough order, at least regarding CO2 output) to

a) use less energy for heating
b) use less electricity
c) consume less 'new stuff' (of all kinds) which has a high embedded energy content (in manufacture/transport/end of life)
d) use less powered transport (both directly and indirectly)

So car use forms a (small ?) part of the least significant of the four items above.

In terms of 'not killing the planet' anyone in a developed country probably needs to reduce the emissions they are (directly and indirectly) responsible for by about 80%. Not driving a car may help, depending on what is used as a substitute.

Manufactured products of many kinds contain an embedded 'fuel/CO2 cost' which (of course) varies but if you assume that most things you buy have been responsible for a similar weight of fossil fuel being burnt you won't be that far off.

cheers
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

brynpoeth
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Re: Bicycle only

Postby brynpoeth » 1 Aug 2019, 5:24am

PH wrote:
Mick F wrote:There's no way that we could exist without a car.

Somewhat over the top, is there a reason you couldn't exist somewhere else?
We make choices and those have consequences, we're free to do so, but the idea that we had no choice, or that we didn't understand the consequences is going to look pretty weak to future generations.

Mick F is a passionate cyclist, up and downhill all the time, surely he could all the shopping by cycle
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brynpoeth
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby brynpoeth » 1 Aug 2019, 5:36am

amediasatex wrote:
Ivor Tingting wrote:To ride an E-bike motorised bicycle is totally at odds with traditional cycling.


It's not at odds with getting people to drive less, and reducing the impact of car use.
..

Ivor is right again, lots of young fit people (too young to drive even) use e-bikes to get to work when they could use a real cycle
I must interrogate them, whether they upgraded from four wheels or downgraded from real bikes :?
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Cycling-of course, but it is far better on a Gillott
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Hobbs1951
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby Hobbs1951 » 1 Aug 2019, 7:35am

We need less cars not more, e-cars make no difference to congestion and they still pollute - too many people owning cars they can only afford because they're available on sub-vented rate finance or PCPs/PCHs.

Let's bring back one third deposit and finance over two years, that would get thousands of cars off the roads.

John.

amediasatex
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby amediasatex » 1 Aug 2019, 8:36am

So car use forms a (small ?) part of the least significant of the four items above.


On a per-person basis maybe, but in any typical town or city personal car use is the main contributor to congestion and localised pollution. Saving the planet one small step at a time is still a worthwhile goal, but there are more localised issues to contend with as well.

Lots of small bits still add up to a large thing, and when you take into account the other factors as well it has broader significance.

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deliquium
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby deliquium » 1 Aug 2019, 8:38am

cc1085 wrote:Hi all,
does anyone here use a bicycle as their sole means of transport? As lifelong cyclist and car/motorcycle owner I'm thinking of going bicycle only though it may be a little more difficult at my age (68) Any thoughts? Has anyone already done this?


I chose to go carless about 6 years ago. 65 years old now. I live in rural Snowdonia. Very rarely use public transport, so cycling is almost a daily activity (average 10 days a year not cycling - either weather (gales) related or just fancy a walk into the village instead, if vittels are required). Once every 4 months or so I'll get a supermarket to a delivery of bulky and or heavy items, otherwise shopping is done by bicycle - village shop 3.5 miles away - 30 mile round trip to nearest town.

It was a difficult decision and I wasn't sure it was going to work, or how practical it was, given where I live.

Needn't have worried - wished I'd did it a couple of years sooner :D
Current pedalable joys

"you would be surprised at the number of people in these parts who nearly are half people and half bicycles"

Brucey
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby Brucey » 1 Aug 2019, 8:51am

amediasatex wrote:
Lots of small bits still add up to a large thing, and when you take into account the other factors as well it has broader significance.


er, that was kind of my point, except that lots of big things add up to an even bigger thing; I do most of my journeys by bicycle but there are much bigger problems than whether we all do likewise or not. Car use is a symptom of an underlying problem, not the problem per se.

cheers
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

amediasatex
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby amediasatex » 1 Aug 2019, 9:26am

I was just pointing out that even though there are bigger problems to tackle, and in some ays, leaving the global environmental imapct out of the equation there are other more localised reasons to want to reduce our reliance on personal car use.

mattheus
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby mattheus » 1 Aug 2019, 9:30am

It's probably just unfortunate phrasing, but whenever I read posts like Brucey's they come across as an excuse for car use. A variation on two-wrongs-making-a-right.

"If all this other pollution is going on, why should I reduce my car use?" seems to be the message.

mercalia
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Re: Living without owning an internal combustion engine

Postby mercalia » 1 Aug 2019, 9:32am

I was reading I think was a Guardian article or maybe BBC News item about Harry saying he wont have more than 2 sprogs. The article went to discuss that having kids over their life time created more CO2 than transport