The Bristol Green Party attended the launch of a new logistics association outside City Hall today, which is revolutionising how businesses make deliveries.
The Bristol Cycle Logistics Association is pioneering the use of cycles to transports goods across the city, by attaching them to small and medium-sized cargo holders.
This new form of logistics not only benefits the environment by cutting emissions, but it also drastically saves on costs, by removing the need for petrol.
With petrol prices renowned for their instability and tendency to rise, the Bristol Cycle Logistics Association is one of a growing trend of cycle-based logistics happening around the world.
For example, the European Cycle Logistics Federation held its inaugural meeting last year, in Cambridge.
Mick Mack, of Velocity Cycle Logistics, affirmed the commercial viability of the method. He referred to DHL - one of the world's largest courier companies - who have started the widespread use of cycles to transport goods in Amsterdam.
"They're not doing it because they think it's a particularly nice idea, they're doing it because it's economically viable," he said.
Cycle-based logistics also compares favourably to conventional logistics in terms of space.
One medium-sized cargo holder can hold one thousand newspapers. Larger loads can be split up over several cycles, or transported using power-assisted cycles.
"It's a very long time coming," said Gus Hoyt, a Green councillor for Ashley and one of the Mayor of Bristol George Ferguson's cabinet.
"It's very important the council actually puts its weight behind delivering by bike, because we do an awful lot of business."
Councillor Hoyt said that delivering individual councillor's papers by cycle would be one of the first steps to achieving this. The papers are currently delivered by minibus.
Green councillor for Bishopston and former Bristol mayoral candidate Daniella Radice also said that cycle logistics would help change the status of using cycles to take children to and from school.
“I hope BCLA can impact on all aspects of life: I’ve regularly cycled my children around Bristol in a bike trailer, and I’d like to see more people carrying loads around by bikes to make it part of every day life,” she said.
For more information on the Bristol Cycle Logistics Association, or to start using cycle logistics for your business, visit www.bcla.info.