A meeting of experts and interested parties recently discussed the possibility of growing cargo bike sales by a further two million units by 2030.
Co-organised by Cycling Industries Europe and attended by the likes of Uber, UPS and with European Commission speakers, the October 15th gathering drew on insight from around 40 businesses and watchers of the space.
An undoubted upward trend (albeit working from a relatively low base) the cargo and electric cargo bike markets have shown signs of coming to life in recent years, with businesses keen to take advantage of proven time and cost savings in the majority of instances when compared to a fleet of vans.
Research commissioned by the Bicycle Association into the topic of replacing vans with cargo bikes has found that in 32% of cases deliveries could be more efficient by pedal power, as could 50% of service trips.
UPS International Sustainability Director, Peter Harris, was among those addressing the room. He said: “Sustainable logistics is not an easy path, but it is possible thanks to the progress that has been made in engineering. It will take time, money and collaborative commitment from industry, government and civil society to get right. Starting this expert group means we are on the right path”.
Met with the challenge of going carbon neutral, the European Commission’s speakers were said to be supportive of the idea that cargo bikes will play a role in altering the inner city transport mix.
Furthermore, those within the bike industry are progressively understanding the potential of cargo bike sales to businesses; as CI.N reported last week, there’s now even specific user manuals tailored for the evolution of the cargo bike.
In London it was found that a butcher utilising an electric cargo bike as opposed to a van was able to shave CO2 emissions by 75%. Not only that, it was demonstrated that the cargo bike was easier to park and thus able to make deliveries faster.
Cycling Industries Europe’s expert group plan to expand its scope, with other firm’s with cargo hauling interest invited to participate in future.
A tight framework of working ideas centred on finance, services and systems, marketing and standards will form the basis of work in the near future to ensure those in the business have the best chance of success
Those wishing to join the group can do so by emailing here.
To read more from Cycling Industries Europe, check in with CI.N’s latest Trade Journal, within which Policy Director Lauha Fried discusses positioning all forms of cycling as transport means.