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Boost Climate Action With E-bike Discounts, Say Cycling Advocates

Cycling advocates are calling for the Government to take climate action by providing discounts on the purchase price of e-bikes.


Today the Government released carbon-cutting ideas to the public, These include funding for e-bike share schemes.

Cycling advocates say these ideas don't go nearly far enough to address climate change.

“New Zealand is racing against time to meet our carbon commitments. Biking is the perfact way to rapidly cut carbon, boost health, and fix transport problems,” said Patrick Morgan from the Cycling Action Network.

“It makes sense to get more people on bikes, but the cost of e-bikes is a barrier for some. To fix that, the Government should offer 33 percent discounts on the purchase of e-bikes.”

He says e-bikes flatten hills, defeat headwinds, can carry children easily, and make travelling by bike attractive for more people.

“To achieve a stable climate, we know transport must be largely decarbonised by 2030. Our current transport system doesn't meets our needs. We need to fix that.”
 

He said getting more people on bikes has compelling benefits for better health, cleaner air, nicer streets, and saving money.

“The range and convenience of e-bikes means they can easily displace car trips. Many people are choosing cargo bikes to carry a load, or a couple of children.”

“Investing in cycling is a miracle pill for our cities.”
 

The Government announced a Clean Car Discount scheme in June, aimed at helping New Zealand meet its climate commitments. E-bikes are much cheaper than EVs.

E-bike discounts and subsidies are popular in the UK, USA, and Canada.

FAQ
 

Why just e-bikes? Why not standard bikes too?
E-bikes are a new tool which can displace car trips. They open up hilly terrain, give people the ability to travel long distances, and make travelling by bike faster and easier. When considering pedal-powered bikes, purchase cost is not a major limiting factor in their use. Most adults already have access to a standard bike.
 

How would a discount work?
Similar to the Clean Car Discount, purchasers would apply to Waka Kotahi /NZTA for a rebate, with proof of purchase.

How would this be funded?
More people biking, more often has huge financial savings to New Zealand: lower health costs, less congestion, safer streets, cleaner air, and lower carbon emissions will cover costs many times over.

Why a discount?

Cost is a barrier to many in purchasing an e-bike. A discount scheme is easy to administer.

What else needs to be done?
CAN also calls for other programmes to support more people cycling: more bike lanes, professional bicycle skills training, better end-of-trip facilities (secure parking, access to showers), and training for bike mechanics. Combined with an e-bike subisdy these will help create enviroments that encourage and support people to ride bikes more often.

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