Ever wonder how long scooters last before they are trashed or scrapped, and what’s being done about it? You’ve come to the right place.
The scooter article on which I’ve been working for the environmental news organization, Ensia*, was published yesterday. Its focus is on the short lifespan of scooters and how cities should (but typically don’t) require documented recycling. Ensia is networked with more than 50 global media outlets, including The Guardian, Business Insider, Scientific American, Vox (and more) so I hope it gets some play and perhaps changes the future for what could otherwise be a coming tsunami of scooter waste.
By the way, scooters are having a rough time right now as most of our U.S. cities are just not built to handle them. They are the most disruptive thing to emerge in our public spaces in years (since cars, in fact) and therefore serve to force needed conversations about the allocation of access-for-all (a conversation that those of us Traveling at the Speed of Bike have been trying to have for years).
Many suburb-cities here in metro Atlanta, where I live, have recently banned them outright, and it will be interesting to see what my suburb-city chooses to do. (See Scooters in the Burgeoning ‘Burbs.) I personally think a ban would be a mistake and would love to see aggressive tactical urbanism that showcases immediate examples of multipurpose accommodation (hello, City of Decatur, Georgia, and your brilliant pop-up protected lane — see video here). Why not take the plunge, Dunwoody and Sandy Springs? See my most recent email to City Hall about other suggestions that came up during the recent Ride to Lunch with the Mayor. See also People for Bikes’ Nine-Step Recipe for Fast, Flexible Changes to City Streets.
Below are my previous blog posts about scooters. I also have more to share (including my big, visionary, possibly-impossible** idea!) that didn’t make it into the Ensia article. Stay tuned!
See related posts:
Light at the End of the Tunnel
Scooters in the Burgeoning ‘Burbs
* a special shout-out and thank you to my mentor for the article — the brilliant London-based environmental journalist, author, and speaker Fred Pearce — and to the always-focused-on-excellence (and absolute pleasure with whom to work) Editor-in-Chief of Ensia, Mary Hoff.
** nothing is impossible