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Electric Vehicles also mean bikes and tricycles

Tricycles for adults? Electric bikes as a replacement for cars?

Two and three wheel electric powered bikes, also referred to as ebikes, motorized bicycle or light electric vehicle (LEV), have been gaining popularity. The market for ebikes is growing faster than the one for cars and trucks and it's one of the booming Green sectors.

Motorized bicycles are powered by an electric motor (in the past, some used a small internal combustion engine) and they are distinguished from electric motorcycles and scooters by being capable of being powered by pedals alone, if required.

Electric bikes and tricycles have the potential to revolutionize transportation in our neighborhoods, places of work, and ‘going’ around town. A significant percentage of car rides are for short trips to local destinations, running errands, accessing your town’s shops or business districts, getting to medical appointments, riding to work, etc., often with only one person in the car.

Touted as a substitute to automobiles, electric bikes and trikes enable us to drive a car significantly less. In some cases it may replace a car altogether.

As a transportation mode, ebikes have a direct impact on greenhouse gas emissions (GHG). Automobiles contribute to air, water, and noise pollution. The motored bike’s footprint is so minor when compared to that of a midsize car, which creates thousands of pounds of carbon dioxide emissions in its manufacturing process and, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), an additional 20 pounds per gallon is burned while driving.

The California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) has been a leader in developing programs designed to reduce emissions from vehicles. In California, vehicles account for well over half of the emissions which contribute to ozone and particulate matter. Zero emission vehicles (ZEVs) and near-zero emission vehicles are a major element of California's plan for attaining healthier air quality standards and meeting the state’s carbon emissions reduction goals.

Resources:

1. The San Francisco Electric Vehicle Association.

2. The Electric Auto Association – Silicon Valley Chapter

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