The NHS and other government services would be saved more than £4 billion if delivery companies switched to using cargo bikes instead of diesel vans for the first and last mile of deliveries.
That’s according to new research that has worked out the savings thanks to reduced congestion and air pollution.
The figures have been published to mark the launch of a share offer for Pedal and Post, a low emissions courier company currently operating in Oxford. The company, currently valued at £2 million, plans to raise up to £500,000 through a crowdfunding campaign on the ethical investment platform Ethex in order to expand in Oxford and to launch in Reading next year.
A recent report looking at the impact of van pollution by researchers at Just Economics found that the hidden social and environmental costs associated with diesel vans total £2.46 billion in London alone.
If a third of those costs were saved from switching to zero emissions cargo bikes, the savings in health and environmental would be £4.25 billion across England.
The costs are derived from savings from reduced congestion, less air pollution, better health outcomes for riders, and fewer accidents and greenhouse gas emissions from switching from diesel vans to cargo bikes.
Chris Benton, the CEO of Pedal and Post, said: “The potential to clean up our air and grow the UK economy is huge. Pollution from diesel van deliveries costs the NHS nearly £25,000 across the lifetime of the van, compared to around £150 for an electric cargo bike. We also know that cargo bikes can deliver more parcels per hour than the average van, and produce 92% less greenhouse gas emissions per delivery, so it really is a no brainer to make the switch.”
(Picture – The Story Network)