Elon Musk started Tesla because he wanted to have a positive impact on the environment. The aim is to do this by producing cars that produce no emissions at all and that do not rely on the burning of fossil fuels.The company’s relative success has shown that there is definitely a breed of driver who would prefer a car that has as little impact on the environment as possible.
Tesla Offers Employees Cash to Commute By Bike
Tesla has never been one of the most conventional companies, but is this stunt designed to show that they are completely committed to a cleaner environment? Or their way to encourage their employees to exercise? These would be good reasons but the one driving this particular project is a lot more pragmatic in nature. Tesla’s headquarters simply do not have enough parking spaces for all of their staff members. If you thought musical chairs as a kid was tough, imagine trying to find an open spot in a parking lot designed for 4 500 cars, when you have 6 000 staff coming in to work on a daily basis.
But Cycling, Really?
Cycling is the only solution that Tesla will pay people to use, but it did have a lot of other helpful ideas for cutting down on the congestion. They asked staff to consider using public transport, pool or take a shuttle instead.
The Cycling Idea is Genius
While the reason that Tesla employees are being encouraged to cycle to help ease the problem with parking is a practical one, it could actually improve the company’s standing as an environmental protector.No engine means no emissions at all – it does not get much more environmentally friendly than that. It is great for the staff as well. A study published in 2017 looked at the impact active commuting had in terms of reducing the risk of death. They looked at over 100 000 subjects and counted active commuting as walking to work, cycling to work, or some combination of the two.
Their findings were very interesting. Those who walked were found to be at a lower risk of developing cardiovascular issues. Cycling, on the other hand, was found to reduce the risk of all-cause death, and of developing cancer in addition to reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease.
So, Cycling is Better?
That is what the scientists in the above-mentioned study found. While walking was certainly better than nothing at all, cycling came up trumps in terms of actual benefits. Is it that cyclists are more likely to go longer distances, or perhaps are willing to attack more challenging terrain? Or maybe it is more that cycling doesn’t have such a negative impact on the body. The study didn’t go into specifics in that way. And, honestly, it doesn’t really matter that much. If you decide to try commuting to work under your own power, would you prefer to get there as quickly as possible, like by using a bike? Or taking a long walk to and from the office?
For most people, cycling is probably going to be the best answer. If you could comfortably walk to and from work, you would probably be doing it anyway.
What it really boils down to, though, is what is more convenient for you in your situation. Let’s look at the pros and cons of walking and cycling.
The Pros of Walking
• Easy to get started
• Don’t need to find space for your bike
• Can also be used in conjunction with public transport
• Good exercise
• No need to worry about traffic
The Cons of Walking
• Takes longer
• Not always safe depending on the area you are in
• Long distances may be challenging
• Not ideal if you need to carry heavy parcels
The Pros of Cycling
• Simple to get started
• Relatively little maintenance cost
• Can easily work your way through traffic or ride on the pavement
• Great for longer distances
• Allows you to carry more stuff
• Good if you want a faster solution
• Great, low impact exercise
The Cons of Cycling
• The bike is an investment
• Can be difficult to store when not in use
• You may battle to get it onto public transport
• There might be a licensing fee to pay
• You will need a helmet
Which one is better for you in your situation? You will need to work out how far your work is from your home, whether or not you can afford a bicycle, whether or not you have the time to walk or cycle to work, etc.
When is Active Commuting a Bad Idea?
For most people, the answer to that question will be, “Never.” However, there are times when it really won’t work out for you.
• You are already swamped. Usually going by foot or bike means leaving a little earlier in the morning. If you already need a few extra hours in the day, this extra stress could be a step too far. Do, however, factor in that you won’t get caught in traffic and you will be exercising.
• Your doctor said, “No.” If you have been leading a sedentary lifestyle over the past few years, you need to check with your doctor about incorporating active commuting. They can tell you how to approach this in a way that maximizes results and minimizes injury.
• The neighborhood you have to pass through is a dangerous one. Look, if you are scared to go through it when you are in a car, imagine how much worse you would feel if you did not have that big metal frame with locked doors around you.
Did Tesla do the Right Thing?
We think they did. They are not making it a hard and fast rule. You just get compensated if you do ride your bike to work. In a way, it is paying employees to make healthier decisions and so is a good thing. The alternative would be to remodel the parking by building another level, or see if they could get more space nearby. It is doubtful that the effort would be worthwhile for just one and a half thousand cars.