One advantage of cycling is cyclists are less exposed to air pollution. A survey from Civic Exchange, ‘Hong Kong Air Quality’ found that air pollutant concentrations are now two hundred percent higher than the World Health Organization’s guideline in 2006. And vehicles are the second-largest source of air pollution in Hong Kong. Therefore, people cycling instead of driving or taking public transport would help to solve the air pollution problem.
The second advantage of cycling is to avoid the traffic jams. The traffic jams in Hong Kong is a grave problem especially at the busy period. People usually spend a lot of time to wait in traffic jams. As Hong Kong people are very busy and they even cannot waste a minute, driving or taking public transport is neither a choice. As a result, people cycling instead of driving or taking public transport would help to avoid the traffic jams.
Another advantage of cycling is to facilitate people to exercise. A survey found that cycling can burn the kilojoules in our body. Hong Kong people are very busy. They often eat unhealthy food and lack exercise. Cycling can help them to have better health. And the survey has found that, if we cycling for about sixteen to eighteen kilometres per hour, one thousand six hundred kilojoules can be burnt in our body. Therefore, people cycling instead of driving or taking public transport can let us have better health.
There are advantages of promoting cycling in Hong Kong, but we should not overlook the disadvantages of it.
One disadvantage of cycling is driving or taking public transport spends less time and brings more convenience for us. Cycling may take time, as Hong Kong people have lots of work to do, cycling may not be a suitable choice for them. And for most of the Hong Kong people, cycling may be a hard exercise for them as it will consume a lot of physical strength. Consequently, more Hong Kong people would prefer driving or taking public transport instead of cycling.
The second disadvantage of cycling is it may constitute a danger on the road. A survey from clear the air, ‘Quick Stats’ has found that Hong Kong has about five hundred and fifty thousand vehicles with a total road length of only two thousand and nine kilometres. On average, there are two hundred and seventy-five vehicles per kilmetre on the road. It shows that Hong Kong has the highest road traffic density in the world. And many Hong Kong people don’t have the knowledge of cycling. As a result, more Hong Kong people would prefer driving or taking public transport for safety.
Another disadvantage of cycling is Hong Kong does not have enough facility to coordinate it. There are just a few parking facilities and there are no cycle parks in Hong Kong. There are only a few cycling lanes in the quiet roads in New Territories, and there are some cycle tracks in the country parks. Most of the Hong Kong people have their activities in the town but not the countryside. It is inconvenient for them to cycle. There are also no parking facilities in the shopping mall. So cycling is troublesome for Hong Kong people. Consequently, more Hong Kong people would prefer driving or taking public-transport.
It can be clearly seen that there are both advantages and disadvantages to encourage cycling instead of driving or taking transport. On balance, however, I believe that protecting our environment is the most important consideration. I therefore favour encouraging to promote cycling and look forward to the day when air pollution is no longer a grave environmental issue in Hong Kong.