A Washington State representative has some news for all you bicyclists who are feeling so smug about saving the environment.
You're actually causing problems, says Rep. Ed Orcutt, a Republican from Kalama, Wash.
Riding nonmotorized two-wheelers causes cyclists to have "an increased heart rate and respiration," according to Orcutt. And because of that exertion, "You would be giving off more CO2 if you are riding a bike than driving in a car."
Orcutt's assessment first came via an email exchange with a constituent who questioned the wisdom of the proposed new bike tax, which is part of the state's transportation bill.
Orcutt then elaborated on his stance in a conversation with the Seattle Bike Blog. He told blogger Tom Fucoloro that while Orcutt hasn't "done any analysis" of the difference in CO2 from a person on a bike compared to the engine of a car, "You can't just say that there's no pollution as a result of riding a bicycle."
Photo of exhausted bicyclist by Elvert X. Barnes via Flickr Creative Commons
But I think he's blowing all the heavy breathing out of proportion.
Maybe Orcutt is recalling late President Ronald Reagan's 1981 claim that "trees cause more pollution than automobiles do."You also might find these items of interest: