Groningen residents cycle and walk almost one and a half million kilometers less each year as a result of the extensive use of e-scooters, action group Scootervrij says, citing government assessments and the data provided by the rental companies.
The privately operated rental schemes have also failed to reduce car use. In effect, that means that shared electric scooters “have a negative impact on public health,” the group says. Municipalities should take these vehicles off the road, the activists believe.
Scootervrij said that the public benefits of e-scooters are negligible and the disbenefits substantial, pointing out that the design of the vehicles is less environmentally friendly and ‘sustainable’ compared to bicycles. E-scooter journeys, the group says, tend to replace walking and cycling, not car use, and users do not get any of the health benefits of active mobility.
Scootervrij is also concerned about the proliferation of e-scooter rental schemes. In just three years, the number of shared scooters in the country has grown to more than 12 thousand vehicles. All providers of shared scooters in the Netherlands – GO Sharing, Felyx, Check and Tier – have recently received capital injections of millions of euros to expand further. With that growth, people are likely to exercise even less, the group fears.
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