A Greenwich butcher has managed to save over 2,000kg of carbon emissions a year, by switching to e-cargo bikes to make local deliveries.
Drings took part in the project commissioned by the Royal Borough of Greenwich to see what the environmental impaact of a van compared to the e-cargo bike would be ovwer two fortnight-long periods; and the results shown a huge difference in emissions. During the trial, 95% of local deliveries under 5km were made by the e-cargo bike, travelling over 200km in total. The CO2 emitted fell by an estimated 75%, with the e-cargo bike releasing less than 500g into the atmosphere, equating to a potential annual saving of 2,171kg.
Sustrans is now calling on the Government to deliver additional demonstration projects and build the evidence to show businesses the benefits of using the bikes. Matt Winfield, Sustrans director, said: “This trial is a great example of the benefits of e-cargo bikes to other small businesses in London and clearly demonstrates that a cargo bike can be a faster and more economical mode of transport.
“This is because they have the advantage of travelling on quieter routes away from rush hour traffic, allowing the business to save money on fuel and provide customers with more on-time and flexible deliveries. This, coupled with the hugely positive environmental and health impact make it an obvious transport solution to motor vehicles. We believe that one of the biggest barriers to the wider uptake of cargo bikes is a level of scepticism of their capabilities by businesses.
“With leadership and urgent action, e-cargo bikes could make cycling a realistic transport choice for many companies and help to tackle the Capital’s chronic air pollution crisis, while reducing congestion on our roads."
The owner of Drings butchers Michael Jones says the e-cargo bike is just as efficient at making shorter deliveries and his van didn't need filling with petrol for weeks, which makes sense financially and environmentally: “I thoroughly enjoyed working with Sustrans and Greenwich in changing the way we make our deliveries. Plus our customers like seeing the butchers on the bike too!"
The cargo bike was received on loan from Greenwich Council and the Drings is now planning to purchase its own e-cargo bike for future deliveries. Businesses across the UK, such as Sainsbury’s, Zedify and DHL, are tapping into the growing consumer trend for ethical and sustainable produce and have also adopted e-cargo bikes as an efficient and environmentally friendly form of delivering goods.