Summary: Our cities need micro mobility (scooters and bikes) to work if we are to reduce car use, as they can replace short distance trips and first/last mile travel. Perhaps unsurprisingly, micro mobility availability seems to help some types of commercial activity.
Why this is important: As we wrote in a previous blog, electric vehicles are a key technology to decarbonise road transport, a sector that accounts for 16% of global emissions. But despite what you might think, it's not just about cars, or even trucks & buses. If you look outside of Europe and North America, two/three wheelers are really important. And they could be important in developed markets as well, as we transition toward a lower car use future in our biggest cities.
The big theme: Transport is not an end in itself. We travel to go somewhere, to do something that is important to us. This means we need to think about transport in its wider social and economic context. For this to work we need to leverage all sources of benefit. So, in addition to the direct financial benefit, we need to add lower pollution, better quality of life, faster journey times, and economic gains by local businesses.
Summary of a study published by Emory University:
Dock less shared micro mobility services (e-scooters to you & I ) have grown substantially in recent years, but their impact upon consumer demand has remained largely unstudied. The authors looked at how the largest and fastest growing segment of this market -- the dock less electric scooter sharing industry - impacts spending in one of the largest segments of the local economy, the restaurant industry.