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Are E-Scooters Eco-Friendly? Indiana University Investigates

One of the key selling points for shareable electric scooters is that they are a more eco-friendly way of getting around compared with buses and cars. Recent research out of Indiana University (IU), however, suggests e-scooters might not be as eco-conscious as some companies claim.

Scientists at IU examined numerous e-scooters around campus and compared them with other modes of transportation. According to their analysis, researchers say e-scooters leave a significant carbon footprint.

The main reason e-scooters have this negative environmental impact has to do with the way they are charged. Investigators note that most of the e-scooters on IU’s campus are charged using coal power.

This problem has also been noted in other electric vehicles marketed as “eco-conscious.” For instance, electric cars could be just as environmentally deleterious as diesel vehicles depending on how customers get their electricity.

IU researchers point out that e-scooters in cities outside of Bloomington might leave less of a carbon footprint. The environmental impact an e-scooter makes mainly depends on how it is charged.

For people concerned with being eco-friendly, walking remains the best way to get around. Some other non-toxic transportation alternatives include skateboards, rollerblades, non-electric bikes, and, of course, non-electric scooters.

There are now five cities in the Hoosier State that have both Lime and Bird e-scooters. In addition to Bloomington these cities include West Lafayette, Elkhart, South Bend, and Indianapolis.

Anyone interested in learning more about the ride-share companies Bird and Lime can visit their official websites at http://www.bird.co/ and http://www.li.me/, respectively.