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Category Archives: UK Posts

How to get more women cycling in cities

To cut greenhouse gas emissions we need to increase cyclist numbers and that means getting more women on their bikes

So much of the world around us is designed for men; from the mundane (public toilets and smartphones) to the potentially deadly (stab vests and crash test dummies). My own research, recently launched at the C40 Women4Climate conference, revealed similar trends in how we design cities and formulate transport policy, with devastating consequences.

Transportation accounts for up to one-third of greenhouse gas emissions from the world’s biggest cities and traffic is the largest source of toxic air pollution. To create sustainable, healthy and liveable cities, we need to increase the number of cyclists on our streets, and that means getting more women on their bikes. In San Francisco, only 29% of cyclists are women; in Barcelona, there are three male cyclists for every female cyclist; in London, 37% of cyclists are female.

So what can cities do to get more women cycling?

Read article from the Guardian Bike Blog

Westminster council’s actions show it puts cars first, not people

Bad day for London’s cyclists …

A legal challenge by Westminster city council to block a major cycle route in London has succeeded on a procedural point, in a move that could send Transport for London back to the drawing board and set safety improvements to one of London’s most dangerous junctions back by months.

The council’s successful judicial review of Cycle Superhighway 11 (CS11), which was due to run from Swiss Cottage to Portland Place, is the latest of its blocks to cycling, walking and road safety improvements. Following the scrapping of the pedestrianisation of Oxford Street, the review has cemented Westminster’s reputation as the car-is-king borough of London. Read full article

 

Why I refuse to follow the law while cycling

For cyclists, ignoring the rules of the road can be a matter of survival

When the sun finally began to shine in the UK this month, I could not wait to drag out my bike to cycle to work.

As soon as I got on the road though, I was struck by a familiar thought: London cyclists are abominable. They sneak through red lights. They scoot along the pavement. They go up one-way streets the wrong way and zip over pedestrian crossings before pedestrians have had time to cross.

I say this with confidence, because I am one of them. I have done most of these things myself and a couple of others as well, as you would know if you had been at Smithfield meat market the other morning. [By Pilita Clark]

Read article

Cycling funds fall by half despite growing popularity

The government halved its spending on cycling infrastructure for Dublin last year despite a rise in the number of cyclists.

There was just over €9 million allocated for cycling projects in the Greater Dublin area last year, which includes parts of Co Kildare, Meath and Wicklow. This compares with €17.5 million in 2016, €17.7 million in 2015 and €15.69 million in 2015.

Read article

Cycling to work linked with large health benefits

Cycling to work cuts the risk of developing heart disease and cancer by almost half, research suggests.

Walking to work is also good for you, although it does not offer the same benefits as taking a bike, experts from the University of Glasgow found.

The new study on 264,337 people – 52% of whom were women – found cycling to work is linked to a 45% lower risk of developing cancer and a 46% lower risk of cardiovascular disease, compared to driving to work or taking public transport. Read more

See also: BBC

And: Independent

And helmets are no panacea either

The economic burden of physical inactivity

The pandemic of physical inactivity is associated with a range of chronic diseases and early deaths. Despite the well documented disease burden, the economic burden of physical inactivity remains unquantified at the global level. A better understanding of the economic burden could help to inform resource prioritisation and motivate efforts to increase levels of physical activity worldwide.

Full article in the Lancet (registration required, but FOC)