When you look at the complete journey from bauxite to bicycle via China, a big container ship and the bicycle showroom, there probably is quite a lot of CO2 emissions involved in making a new bicycle.
Are their any easily quotable figures for this?
Are there any handy equivalent metrics, e.g. equivalent to x miles in a family saloon or equivalent to x hundred packets of Walkers Crisps (at 80g per pack)?
I would like to know a generally agreed figure as I have found myself being stumped in conversation with motorists that (after conversation has moved onto their planet trashing ways) have the cheek and audacity to criticise cyclists.
What happens is that they go ad-hominem, 'pointing out' that buying a new bicycle is 'bad for the environment', particularly one made on the other side of the planet. Rather than have no defence I would like to be able to say 'yeah but that is only equivalent to x hundred of your gas-guzzling miles/hours 'sat' in traffic.'
Has anyone done a carbon audit for a bicycle yet? If so, are there any particularly low-carbon bikes out there?
I mention the Walkers Crisps in passing - no I don't want to know that cycling has a huge footprint if the fuel (food) is caviar/fancy-mini-corn from Zambia/lamb from New Zealand/fish from the Arctic (or even a nice pack of Prawn Cocktail crisps prepared with sunflower oil grown in Eastern Europe). Just the carbon footprint from whatever bike brands have bothered to measure it, not the on-going fuel costs (food).