Are protected bicycle lane networks an effective investment in reducing greenhouse gasses and strengthening city economies? A new study from ITDP, Despacio, and the FIA Foundation provides the first empirical evidence directly linking bicycle infrastructure to cutting carbon in middle-income cities. In fact, networks of protected bicycle lanes provide more carbon reduction per dollar spent on infrastructure than most other transport interventions. They also offer very rapid economic returns on investment, paying for themselves in less than a year. 

This webinar will summarize the findings of the new study, Protected Bicycle Lanes Protect the Climate, conducted as part of ITDP’s Cycling Cities campaign. Study authors will also introduce an interactive modeling tool that any city can use to predict the impacts of a planned cycle lane network.

This event will feature live interpretations in Spanish.




About the Moderator

Sheila Watson Deputy Director, FIA Foundation

Sheila Watson is Deputy Director of the FIA Foundation, a UK-based Charity which is committed to promoting safe sustainable mobility across the world.

Sheila leads the Foundation’s work on environmental and sustainability issues, clean air and gender, as well as its research programme. She is also Executive Secretary to the Global Fuel Economy Initiative (GFEI), which seeks to support the development of fuel economy policies across the world, and The Real Urban Emissions Initiative (TRUE) which uses real world emissions data to support the uptake of clean vehicles. Sheila is a board member of several mobility initiatives and projects such as the World Bank’s sustainable mobility for all (SUM4ALL) project. She was recently named as one of the 40 most influential women in transport by the German Government.

An economist, with many years’ experience as an advisor and consultant, her previous role was as Senior Special Adviser to the UK Labour government at the Department for Trade and Industry, The Privy Council, the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, and the Foreign Office. During the 10 years she spent at the heart of the UK government, she specialised in a range of environmental and resource protection issues from sustainable farming and food production to international climate security. Her former roles include Deputy Director of the Centre for Local Economic Strategies, and Policy Researcher at the Institute for Fiscal Studies. Sheila has an Honours Degree from the University of Oxford, and an MSc in Economics from Birkbeck College, London.


About the Speakers

Taylor Reich Senior Research Associate, ITDP Global

D. Taylor Reich (they/them) is a senior research associate on ITDP’s Global team, responsible for impact assessment and data analytics. They are the author of Pedestrians First, the first-ever global walkability database, which also uses data from OpenStreetMap. They were also a lead author of The Compact City Scenario – Electrified, a report modeling decarbonization of urban passenger transport worldwide. Before ITDP, Taylor was a Fulbright research fellow in Amman, Jordan.

María Fernanda Ramírez Bernal Safe and Sustainable Mobility Lead, Despacio

Maria is a civil engineer and a road design specialist, currently working as a Safe and Sustainable Mobility Lead at Despacio. She is also a professor at the Universidad del Rosario in Bogotá. She has worked on road safety and active mobility projects in Colombia, Panama, Ecuador and México, applying technical civil engineering concepts through an urban planning point of view.

Maria has her master’s degree inTransportation Engineering from the Escuela Colombiana de Ingeniería (Colombian School of Engineering) and Master in Community Planning from the University of Cincinnati.


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