Bikes Belong in Ontario!
from right, Rob White of Btac, Dr Charles Tator of Thinkfirst, apologies to the third person whose name I missed....
With the Ontario election going on, everybody is trying to make themselves heard and get promises out of the politicians. We attended a press conference set up by the Bicycle Trade Association of Canada, which, not surprisingly, is in favour of a "comprehensive policy program to promote cycling." They note that bikes are the most energy efficient vehicles on the road - "a bicycle can cover a given distance using one-thousandth of the fuel and one-thousandth the greenhouse gases than does a typical car. Assuming only a 2% conversion of automobile trips to bicycle trips in Ontario, greenhouse gas emissions reductions would be in the order of 330,000 tons of CO2 /year."
the joint was full of liberal politicians; the Liberal party has promised to exempt bikes and helmets from the provincial sales tax and to invest in cycling infrastructure. Local candidates Tony Ruprecht and Sylvia Watson at front; sorry, Tony, I am still voting Green.
Dedicated bike lanes, routes and paved shoulders to ride on.
Bikes should be universally allowed on buses, subways, streetcars and trains.
Bicyclists should have a secure place to store their bikes when they work or shop.
They should have a place to shower and change when they get to work.
Sales taxes should be eliminated on bikes, helmets, locks, shoes and clothing to send a message about what transportation we as a society want to encourage and why.
This Treehugger can't argue with anything in that list, and would have added compulsory helmet use, but hope that they are successful in getting policies out of the other parties as well. ::Btac