What They’re Not Telling You About E Scooters
Plenty of articles will tell you that electric scooters are better for the planet, they reduce your carbon footprint, blah, blah, blah. But none of them every go into the specifics of how e scooters reduce your carbon footprint and why they are better for the planet, aside from a trite statistic or two.
According to a recent study by the European Environment Agency, “e scooters produce up to 85% fewer emissions than gasoline-powered cars” (EEA).
Let’s break down the numbers. The average car emits around “4.6 metric tons of CO2 per year”, while an e scooter emits only “0.3 metric tons per year”. That means that if you switch to an e scooter for your daily commute, (because let’s face it, just using it for weekend rides won’t cut it, at least for the sake of the planet) you could save up to “4.3 metric tons of CO2 emissions annually”. That’s the equivalent of taking more than “900 cars off the road” (EEA). To add to that, electric scooters are powered by rechargeable batteries, meaning they emit zero harmful emissions, unlike their counterpart (EPA).
But it’s not just about the emissions. E scooters are also more energy-efficient than cars. On average, they use about “0.1 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity per mile”, while cars use about “0.34 kWh per mile”. That’s almost four times more energy-efficient than cars (EEA).
According to a study by the European Cyclists’ Federation, e scooters emit zero tailpipe emissions, meaning they do not produce harmful pollutants such as carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, or particulate matter, making them cleaner than gasoline powered vehicles. If that wasn’t already obvious enough. In a recent study by the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, replacing gasoline-powered cars with electric scooter could reduce the emissions of NOx and PM by up to 99% (NCD). Meaning, there would be significantly less air pollution, which would also impact the health of many. Replacing car trips with electric scooters could save up to 11,000 lives per year in Europe by reducing air pollution which was found in a study by The European Cyclists’ Federation (ECF Cycling). So now we’re not even talking about the benefits to the planet but also to its inhabitants.
If we invested in this sustainable mode of transportation, the long-term benefits would be at a surplus. The Rocky Mountain Institute found that replacing car trips with e scooters and other micro mobility options could save up to $635 billion in global societal benefits by 2050 (RMI). That’s less than 30 years from now.
The numbers speak for themselves, far fewer emissions with energy efficiency four times greater than cars. By supporting the growth of e scooters and investing in their development, we can pave the way for a cleaner, healthier future for generations to come.
European Environment Agency. “Electric Vehicles from Life Cycle and Circular Economy Perspectives.” European Environment Agency, 22 Oct. 2020.
United States, Environmental Protection Agency. “Greenhouse Gas Emissions from a Typical Passenger Vehicle.” EPA, 2020, https://www.epa.gov/greenvehicles/greenhouse-gas-emissions-typical-passenger-vehicle.
European Cyclists’ Federation. “Electric Scooters and Bikes: The New Kids on the Block.” European Cyclists’ Federation, 28 Nov. 2019, https://ecf.com/news-and-events/news/electric-scooters-and-bikes-new-kids-block.
European Cyclists' Federation. “Cycling and Walking Can Save Lives in Europe.” 19 Dec. 2019, https://ecf.com/news-and-events/news/cycling-and-walking-can-save-lives-europe. Accessed 24 Mar. 2023.
North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality. “Clean Transportation: The Benefits of Electric Vehicles.” 10 Nov. 2021, https://deq.nc.gov/news/key-issues/clean-transportation/clean-transportation-benefits-electric-vehicles. Accessed 24 Mar. 2023.
Rocky Mountain Institute. “Micromobility: The Next Transport Revolution.” 11 Apr. 2019, https://rmi.org/insight/micromobility-the-next-transport-revolution/. Accessed 24 Mar. 2023.