E-scooters present a growing public-health challenge

All over America and around the world, municipal officials are considering transportation alternatives that move large numbers of people while cutting pollution — especially greenhouse gases — and easing traffic congestion.

Over the last decade, bike sharing became ubiquitous in U.S. cities from Boston to Bakersfield, but small, electric e-scooters are heralded by some as the next phase in the greening of our towns and cities.

Fast-growing e-scooter firms Bird and Lime — and the larger more established firms Uber and Lyft — are aggressively pushing scooter-sharing. It’s promoted in cities as widespread as Washington, D.C.; Buenos Aires; Tel Aviv and Paris as clean, cost-effective commuting, short distance travel and even sightseeing options.