From the Editors of E/The Environmental Magazine
Dear EarthTalk: Are there any electric bicycles or scooters that make for a nice cheap, green-friendly commute? — Sean Foley, Nashua, NH
Bicycle commuting has long been a symbol of greener living, and it is great exercise, too. But most people are probably not up to commutes much beyond five or 10 miles one-way in the interest of time and in not arriving at work too pooped (or sweaty) to pop.
Now a number of battery-powered two-wheelers are coming on the market that won’t get you your exercise but will get you from point A to B and back with minimal environmental impact. Consumers can start greening up their commutes on such vehicles for as little as $1,500 plus about 25 cents a day in electricity costs—not bad at all when you consider that a new car costs thousands of dollars more up front and chugs mass quantities off expensive and polluting gasoline.
Many of us conjuring up images of electric bikes and scooters may envision the finicky mopeds of the 70s and 80s, but today’s offerings are much improved and quite diverse.
Those who want to go fast but stay green should check out some of the electric scooters made by Miami-based EVTAMERICA. Each of the company’s three models tops out at a maximum speed of 45 miles per hour—respectable even on the highway. “People want to go at least 40 mph,” says the company’s co-owner, Fernando Pruna. “Everything built before could only do 25 or 30.”