In spite of cold weather and lots of steep terrain, Norway recently announced it will spend $1 billion to build new bike highways to reduce the country’s fossil fuel consumption and emissions. Research has shown that many more people will take to two wheels if they feel safe, and in doing so they tend to get healthier and emissions decrease. Electric motors built into the wheel hubs of bicycles now easily level all but the very steepest of hills.
More information at Science Alert
Genuine Progress Indicator
Fourteen years ago Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI) Atlantic measured the cost to Nova Scotia’s productivity of 7 chronic illnesses eg. heart disease, diabetes:
- The amount lost was $3 billion of GDP annually.
- Caring for people with these chronic illnesses accounts for 60% of the total cost of government’s budget for health care.
- Forty percent of this general productivity loss, or $1.2 billion, could be prevented.
- This is equivalent to about 2.5% in economic growth.
Note that in some recent years there has been 0% or little economic growth in the province. Last year Nova Scotia was optimistically projected to experience 2% points of growth. Two point five percent of growth could be created by health improvements. Let’s do the math. Could be time for an update !