A new study – ‘Jobs and job creation in the European cycling sector’ – has showed that Europe’s cycling industry now employs a whopping 655,000 people. That is more people than mining and quarrying and also twice what the steel industry employs.
Jobs within the cycling sector include bicycle production, retail, infrastructure, tourism and services. The study also stated that if the number of Europe’s cycling journeys doubled, this figure could rise to over a million by the year 2020.
Speaking to the Guardian, Kevin Mayne, the development director at the European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF) which commissioned the paper, expressed the simplicity of the situation for governments: “You know that investing in cycling is justified from your transport, climate change and health budgets. Now we can show clearly that every cycle lane you build and every new cyclist you create is contributing to job growth. Investing in cycling provides a better economic return than almost any other transport option. This should be your first choice every time.”
One of the most interesting things about the study is the mention of the knock on effect bicycle transport can have on local businesses. As more people opt for the saddle instead of the car, they are more inclined to shop and use local services.
Here at Total Women’s Cycling, we are delighted with the results of this study as it certainly will do no harm in the argument for better cycling infrastructure across the UK. With safety concerns being one of the largest barriers for entry with potential commuters, we are optimistic about the changes that will occur in the coming years this encouraging many more bums on saddles.
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