A cyclists emits more CO2 than a Porsche Cayenne

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

CayennevsBicycleI do not think so so for one moment but time and again we find statements and comments such as this all over the place, apparently backed up by supposedly independent scientific research.

OK, so as I cycle I breathe out CO2. Yes, agreed, but I also do so while walking or just by the simple act of breathing; all humans, and every other living being, bar fish, breathe in oxygen, as in air, and breathe out carbon dioxide. This is why this entire carbon measuring stuff is – pardon my language – crap.

While the cyclist exhales CO2, as inn simple carbon dioxide, the Porsche Cayenne referred to “exhales” not just CO2 but all manner of pollutants and we really must get back to calling our problem air pollution (and general pollution) and not just carbon emissions.

What those people who like to claim that thus cycling has greater CO2 emissions also forget to factor in into this equation is the pollution – and I deliberately use that term here – cause in the manufacture of said Porsche and already in the production of the raw materials said car is made from.

The cyclist may be exhaling an amount of carbon dioxide and some pollution will have occurred during the manufacture of the bicycle and it components but once it is dealt with the bicycle and cycling is non-polluting, bar the somewhat increased exhalation of carbon dioxide by the cyclist while cycling, compared to walking and sitting. We all breathe in and exhale all the time and during any physical activity the rate is just somewhat greater and thus somewhat more CO2 is being exhaled.

Here we can see how figures can be used too almost prove anything and on top of it all we also may have to ask who commissioned and paid for that kind of “scientific” research. I am afraid to say that there is no one who can tell me that using a human-powered vehicle of the simplest kind, well almost, if we discount the Draisine and the Kick-Scooter, is more polluting, even if only by way of CO2 emissions than a 4x4 Porsche powered by an internal combustion engine, and I hope no one else falls for that one either.

It is time that we came back to reality and stopped talking about carbon emissions as if that were the only thing. When we called it pollution that was more like it and brown carbon, the stuff that is causing the Himalayan glaciers to melt, is nothing more than soot, regardless of how they want to paint it, and thus air pollution from factory chimneys and those of power stations.

© 2015