Stockholm, the capital of Sweden and Scandinavia’s largest urban area has just under a million inhabitants and a bicycle modal share of 8%.
Professor Peter Schantz from GIH in Stockholm has calculated that if one third of Stockholm’s car commuters switched to cycling, the resulting improvements in air quality would save 60 lives a year and improve living conditions for individuals with respiratory problems. In addition 20 cases of early deaths would be prevented by the increased activity of the cycling commuters themselves. On average, three cyclists die in Stockholm each year in traffic. Policies that lead to less dangerous emissions and congestion in our cities at the same time improve the quality of life of people with respiratory distress, while contributing to reversing the global climate changes affecting everyone’s health.
In Sweden 1,500 people die every year due to the effects of air pollution and road dust from traffic, and several thousand people die prematurely as a result of physically inactive lifestyles. Thanks to the growing trend of e-bikes the potential for active mobility to gain modal share from motorized transport is greater than ever.