Press Release

BA research: net zero London means 25k new cycling jobs and £5 billion/year bicycle economy boost

November 23, 2021

A report commissioned by the Bicycle Association (BA) from the independent research group Transport for Quality of Life, published today, indicates that achieving London’s net zero carbon target would create 25,000 new green jobs in London’s ‘Bicycle Economy’ and an economic dividend of nearly £5 billion a year.

The Bicycle Association, with the support of 1000+ Investor in Cycling companies who fund its advocacy work, is working with local advocacy group, the London Cycling Campaign, to highlight the economic, employment and environmental benefits of growing the bicycle economy to leaders and decision makers across London.

The report details an economic dividend of nearly £5 billion each year to the London economy, from a tripling of sales of cycling products and services on the high street; and the related environmental and health benefits from Londoners’ use of those products and services. 

October 2021

The Economic Benefits of local cycling investment: Greater London Case Study

Report for the Bicycle Association by Lisa Hopkinson, Transport for Quality of Life

With 4.7 million car journeys – half under 3 km – cyclable every day in London, a significant increase in cycling mode share to 14% of short trips in the capital is a realisable ambition. Over 80 cities worldwide have already achieved this level and higher.

Such an increase in cycling, still a small part of the overall transport mix, would generate up to 25,000 ‘green jobs’ in London’s bicycle economy – in retail, logistics, manufacturing and tourism. This would be in addition to the 8,000 jobs already in cycling. 

The report highlights the progress that is already underway. In 2020, increasing levels of cycling in London helped avoid around 270 premature deaths, nearly 1,900 serious illnesses, around 216 million vehicle kilometres, and thousands of tonnes of greenhouse gas and air pollutant emissions.  

By 2030 it’s not just the positive environmental benefit of net zero which will be dramatic – but the economic benefit too,”

said Simon Irons, the Bicycle Association’s Market Data Service Director. He added:

“Our market data is probably the best of any cycling market in the world – tracking nearly a million cycling products and services every month. We’ve used this data to help forecast how big the bicycle economy would be when London becomes a zero carbon city.

We want to share this information with Londoners to show just how economically valuable cycling is. Then, with the support of the industry’s Investors in Cycling, we want to do the same for every region of England and the devolved nations.”

Dr. Ashok Sinha, Chief Executive of the London Cycling Campaign, said:  

“London is showing strong leadership by targeting net zero carbon status by 2030. A large-scale shift to cycling from private car use is essential to achieving this. This must-read research shows that investing in high quality cycling infrastructure will not only enable this shift, but generate a huge number of new, green, career opportunities, especially for the most disadvantaged Londoners. It will also help create new business opportunities that will help revitalise London’s hard hit high streets.”

About the Bicycle Association

The Bicycle Association (BA) is the national trade association for the UK cycle industry. The BA works to represent the best interests of the UK cycle industry to government, stakeholders and the general public. The mission of the BA is to grow cycling, particularly everyday transport cycling, and to grow the cycling market in the UK. The BA’s advocacy work is funded by 1000+ companies who contribute as Investors in Cycling.

About London Cycling Campaign

The London Cycling Campaign (LCC) is one of the largest urban cycling campaigns in the world. LCC campaigns for action by London’s political leaders to make London’s roads safe enough for people of all ages and abilities to cycle for their everyday journeys, helping to create a greener, healthier, fairer and happier city. LCC’s Climate Safe Streets campaign calls for the decarbonisation of London’s roads by 2030, with cycling at the heart of this transformation.

About the Bicycle Association’s Market Data Service

The BA’s Market Data Service (MDS) is a not-for-profit service run by the Association for the benefit of the UK cycling industry. The Market Data Service tracks over 1m cycling products and services across the UK cycling market on a monthly basis.  It captures sales directly from tills across the country, representing over 70% of the UK market (over £2bn of sales in the last 12months).  It is the most powerful market data survey of any cycling market around the world and can slice data by volume, value, category, price band, selling channel, brand and region.