Two-stroke isn’t Rad, it’s Bad.

Via Waylon Lewis
on May 5, 2010
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Saw this awesome, fun, motorized bike at the Farmers’ Market

…and was totally into it. Loved the bro, too, and the Phat VT sticker.

But then as we stood around talking about it with some friends, I learned that two-stroke engines are reallllly polluting. A lawnmower (buy electric!) can be worse than a car. True?

two stroke polluting engines bike scooters lawnmowers

Via Discover:

In 2001 Mary Jane Ortega, then mayor of San Fernando City in the Philippines, knew her city was choking to death. The cause? Air pollution, specifically that from two- and three-wheeled vehicles powered by dirty two-stroke engines, including motorcycles, scooters, and the motorized rickshaws known as tuk-tuks.

Around the world, outdoor air pollution kills 800,000 people a year and sickens many more. While big vehicles like Hummers and other SUVs are often blamed for excessive emissions, some of the worst culprits are the smallest rides around…

…larger but much more efficient auto­mobiles…use four-stroke engines…two-stroke vehicles spew great volumes of dangerous hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, and smoke. A single two-stroke engine produces pollution equivalent to that of 30 to 50 four-stroke automobiles…


About Waylon Lewis

Waylon Lewis, founder of elephant magazine, now & host of Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis, is a 1st generation American Buddhist “Dharma Brat." Voted #1 in U.S. on twitter for #green two years running, Changemaker & Eco Ambassador by Treehugger, Green Hero by Discovery’s Planet Green, Best (!) Shameless Self-Promoter at Westword's Web Awards, Prominent Buddhist by Shambhala Sun, & 100 Most Influential People in Health & Fitness 2011 by "Greatist", Waylon is a mediocre climber, lazy yogi, 365-day bicycle commuter & best friend to Redford (his rescue hound). His aim: to bring the good news re: "the mindful life" beyond the choir & to all those who didn't know they gave a care. | His first book, Things I would like to do with You, is now available.


3 Responses to “Two-stroke isn’t Rad, it’s Bad.”

  1. smithnd says:

    You should check out my friend, in Boulder, who is building electric-motorized bicycles out of production bicycle frames: he has a Specialized Stump Jumper convert and a recumbent convert. His name is John English, works with a small mechanical engineering studio: Boulder Engineering Studio:

  2. Hmmm…a bit more technical info would be useful here.
    What is it about two stroke engines that cause them to be so polluting, thus making that smiling green dude up there such an unknowing ass?

  3. I wanted to be a professional biker but unfortunately budget and responsibility factor did not let me do that. But now i want to be a racer let see what happens now.