China's bike-sharing revolution inspires Kenyans

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Added On December 5, 2017

UN Environment launched a bike ride event inspired by China's bike-sharing model in Kenya's capital city of Nairobi.

Hundreds of internationals and locals joined the ride aiming to reduce air pollution. 

The event aimed to raise awareness of the role of sustainable urban transportation in reducing air pollution.
 
Official of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) said the launch signified a revolutionary move towards road infrastructural development within African and other cities.
 
SOUNDBITE: ERIK SOLHEIM, UNEP Executive Director
"The significance of this is to take the bike sharing revolution that started in China but it's now spreading like wildfire to all parts of the world to see how that can be taken to Nairobi."
 
He noted that air quality in urban areas is below the WHO standards.
 
SOUNDBITE: ERIK SOLHEIM, UNEP Executive Director
"We want to promote a whole new way of city transportation very close you have metros and big on infrastructure projects than bike sharing, then you add electrical mobility and electrical vehicles. If you add this, you going to drastically reduce pollution in the cities and by the way it's going to make cities more healthy, more friendly, more nicer for people and am sure we on the way of making revolution manifest on the roads."
 
The official also applauded China's efforts in curbing pollution.
 
SOUNDBITE: ERIK SOLHEIM, UNEP Executive Director
"I think you see a very rapid improvement of air in Beijing and many Chinese cities as well ,from the combination of public awareness people really want to see clean air and see national authorities taking action.
 
Many participants praised the bike share model .
 
SOUNDBITE: FRANS MAKKEN, Dutch Ambassador to Kenya
"It's evident that bikes are so much cleaner and so much easier, no parking problems and there are so many advantages so that's why I extremely support this initiative of UN Environment. I also hope that all the exposure that it gets will lead to a lot of Nairobi dwellers to think again and say that the bike is the alternative to my car,or matatu(Taxi), it would be so much better for the environment."
 
SOUNDBITE:ZABLOM WEKESA, Nairobi resident
"I have been super curious about Mobike for along time, of course, when we started working on the bike-share we discovered that we had that we taking over the globe and they were from China and we were like ooh. For me riding one and exploiting the possibility of us having mobikes here in Nairobi I think its super exciting."