Cycling in the rain: BRING IT ON!

I got completely drenched cycling the kids to school this morning. But as I was peddling along and struggling to see through the curtain of rain battering my face the glass half full part of me was happy about one thing: the fresh, clean air. I, and all the other people in the city, have to inhale the toxic fumes from the exhausts of motor vehicles which is definitely less noticeable when it rains. I don’t like the smell of car exhausts very much and I’m certain inhaling the fumes is not good for me, or for anyone else living in a city.

The WHO recently announced that air pollution is a “public health emergency” killing more than 3.3 million people around the world each year. London exceeded its annual air pollution limit in just seven days earlier this month. And Rome and Milan had to temporarily ban cars from their roads recently in an effort to curtail air pollution.

Next time you want to take the car out for a trip that could be made using a more active mode of travel, think again. Think about the pollution your car emits that everyone, even those of us without a car, are forced to inhale. Think about our changing climate and how burning fossil fuels is adding more carbon dioxide to our atmosphere. Think about how good for you it could be to adopt more active modes of transport on a regular basis.

The sun has come out now. I hope the air still smells fresh 🙂

 

14 thoughts on “Cycling in the rain: BRING IT ON!

  1. Someone said to me today, Are you running to the station in this?
    Well, yes, as I have no car, it is either run or walk and I know what I would rather do.
    Rain isn’t my favourite thing, mainly because wearing glasses makes it awkward. But I’d so much rather run and then read than drive. It makes you feel so good afterwards. That’s the sad thing, that so many people are missing out. When I lived in the countryside, I didn’t even have the opportunity to do all this, yet I see people driving to work who live an even shorter distance from work than the distance I run from the station.

    1. I see people driving their kids to the same school my kids go to and they live just a couple of streets away from the school. I don’t understand it. Why do they do that?

      We’re going away this weekend and we’re taking the train and I plan to sit and read as well. I can’t wait.

  2. I commend you … not only do you cycle the kids to school, but even in rain.

    Seems like every day, someone asks me how far my commute is … it’s not that bad really … only 8-10 miles, depending on which route I take. Usual reaction is “I could barely do 5” … If only they tried, they would know it’s not that difficult.

    1. We’ve become so car-dependent that we don’t know how to use our legs any more. It’s very sad.

      The trip to school is not very far. It’s only about 1 mile each way and we can easily walk it but so can all the parents who drive their kids in huge gas-guzzling tanks.

      1. I totally agree. One time, I passed by a local elementary school, and saw all the SUV’s hovering around the front of the school, just to drop their kids off. Think of all the pollution they are creating, just by waiting to drop off their kids.

      2. There’s lots of that at our local school too. They sit inside the car looking at an electronic device with the car running while they wait for their kids.

      3. I shake my head as I ride past them. We never had this when I was small … But then again, that was 40 years ago 🙂

    1. I just realised I never replied to this. Auckland is a very car-dependent city and it’s practically impossible to live car-free there so I don’t blame you for using a car. We also had a car when we lived in Auckland.

  3. Well, air pollution health impacts and rules. I am inspired:

    First Rule of Successful Mass Poisoning: Do it slowly so they won’t be alarmed even after they notice.

    1. Who is the they? Aren’t we poisoning ourselves? There are lots of people who could choose not to drive a car or choose an electric one instead but they do not.

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