Even in the 21st century, large percentages of people can't move from A to B without using an expensive vehicle that spews carcinogenic fumes all over anyone who dares go outside. Climate change issues aside, this is unacceptable.

A lot of people are broke, overweight, short on time, and long on pollution. That sounds overwhelming until you consider the profound impact the bike has on all these issues.

Using a bike to run short errands (aka most of them) simultaneously shrinks waistlines, commute times, healthcare costs, budget deficits, air pollution, and the fuel money we give to many entities that seem to want to hurt us. It does all this while expanding whole new markets and economies.

If that weren't enough, the bicycle does all this for so very little money. Please just ride a bike as much as you can and get everyone you can to do the same.


This site is about acting on some big problems all at once, today. Many of us need urgent improvements to our physical, environmental, and economic health. Legislators, if or when they ever have the money or the will, never move fast enough to do this. It is time for "Plan B": the plan that doesn't get all the attention but inevitably gets the job done.

There are lots of ways to improve physical, environmental, and economic health out there but only cycling improves them all simultaneously. And no other action you can take can do all this without:
  • money
  • toxic fuel
  • pending research or testing
  • someone else's cooperation (anyone can step outside and go)
Scaled massively, cycling delivers the immediate impact on serious global problems everyone demands:
  • Health care costs would plummet as fitness escalates.
  • 1/5 of a driver's income would go into our economy instead of oil/auto balance sheets
  • New economies would evolve to accommodate new demand from people out from behind their steering wheels
  • Air and noise pollution would recede as motor traffic does
Finally, many find cycling fun. What better way to improve the world?

Given all this, cycling is a prime candidate for Plan B. It has the greatest potential for both mass adoption and profound impact.

Many people are already working hard to promote bike-friendly legislature. Lots of great achievements have been made. Nevertheless, the world still drives and the number of drivers is growing fast in developing countries.

A lot of people are broke, overweight, short on time, and long on pollution. That sounds overwhelming until you consider the profound impact the bike has on all these issues.

In places like India, China, and Africa, they still have a chance to avoid the physical, environmental, and eventual economic decline that results from a sedentary lifestyle and car-based economy but they are in danger of missing it. In America, we still have a chance to reverse the damage.

What to do?

Step 1
Take money that typically goes to cars, gas, cable television, video games, etc., and spend it on a bike instead. Use that bike for serious transportation, e.g. to go to the grocery store, not just for fun.

Cyclists running errands are a rolling billboard for a better way to do things. They tend to be thinner, quick, and healthier because cycling gets blood pumping at rates that prevent a host of diseases.

Unlike other exercise, cycling distracts from the pain of exercise with a feast of sounds, smells, and sensations. Best of all, it takes less time than other exercise because it doubles as transportation.

The number of rolling billboards is already exploding in some places. Click this map to see where.

Step 2
Being a cyclist inspires others passively. But what about doing it actively: not with talk, votes, pocket change, petitions, but with immediate personal action.

Take money, no longer needed for gym memberships, and donate it to the many organizations that buy or donate bicycles to those that don't have them. Or take an old bike and donate that. There are charities that deliver bikes to the developing world like Word Bicycle Relief. There are also local bike shops like Mike's Bikes that ship bikes to Africa. Of course, it would be great if our governments spent money doing this instead of bailing out banks and car companies but they don't so collective personal action is "Plan B".

And, of course, volunteer. Become a member of the many cycling clubs and coalitions like this one: American League of Cyclists. They are constantly finding fun and effective ways to promote cycling.

Step 3

Use the traditional channels for change and compel representatives to act. Politicians hate sticking their necks out for things because they are often punished and rarely rewarded for it. Nevertheless, they love to surf a wave of popularity. Collective support for cycling-friendly legislation will give them a platform on which they can stand and promote. That, they'll do. Write the president, senators, and congresspeople, and tell them to facilitate the change in progress. Ask them to appear on a bike, not just for fun but, to get somewhere.

No speech or legislation is as compelling for change as seeing someone right next to you successfully doing things differently.

This is PlanBike: a profile of cycling as serious transport and getting others to do the same. This is Plan B for improving physical, environmental, and economic health around the world right now.