The United Nations has declared June 3rd as International World Bicycle Day. This was decided last week during the 72nd Regular Session of the UN General Assembly in New York City.
The resolution acknowledges the "uniqueness, longevity and versatility of the bicycle, which has been in use for two centuries, and that it is a simple, affordable, reliable, clean and environmentally fit sustainable means of transportation, fostering environmental stewardship and health."
Why celebrate the bicycle?
- The bicycle is a simple, affordable, reliable, clean and environmentally fit sustainable means of transportation;
- The bicycle can serve as a tool for development and as a means not just of transportation but also of access to education, health care and sport;
- The synergy between the bicycle and the user fosters creativity and social engagement and gives the user an immediate awareness of the local environment;
- The bicycle is a symbol of sustainable transportation and conveys a positive message to foster sustainable consumption and production, and has a positive impact on climate.
What is the UN asking of Member States?
The UN encourages Member States to "devote particular attention to the bicycle in cross-cutting development strategies and to include the bicycle in international, regional, national and subnational development policies and programmes."
All states are encouraged to "improve road safety and integrate it into sustainable mobility and transport infrastructure planning and design in particular to promote pedestrian safety and cycling mobility, with a view to broader health outcomes, particularly the prevention of injuries and non-communicable diseases".
The bicycle is highlighted in by the UK as a tool for sustainable development, strengthening education for children and young people as well as promoting health, preventing disease, promoting tolerance, mutual understanding and respect and facilitating social inclusion and a culture of peace.
Michael Møller, Director General of the United Nations Office in Geneva, shares his views on this important milestone:
“Sport is a powerful tool to promote peace and achieve development objectives. The values of sport find their echo in those of the United Nations, whose foundations rest on universal values that transcend differences of culture, and social standing, language and religion. Physical activities, like cycling, not only contribute directly to implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), they also foster the values on which progress depends: tolerance and respect, teamwork and fair play.
What are we doing at Vitus Pro Cycling?
The UN direction is timely and supports our aims within the cycle industry. As a cycle team in the professional domestic circuit, we have a unique opportunity to lead by example in supporting the UN SDGs and we are aiming to do develop this capability at every level within our organisation.
What can you do?
We are encouraging all members of the cycling family and all our supporters to join us in celebrating World Bicycle Day today by sharing the news, and promoting any events organised for this occasion on social media using #June3WorldBicycleDay.