Andy Cline makes some compelling comments on the relative psychological ease and economic/political value of short range bicycle commuting in his essay "The One Mile Solution". Short range commuting provides good exercise and eliminates those incredibly inefficient short car trips that get the worst gas milage.
The piece is especially relevant if you live right in town. Even out on North Mesa, the most daunting climb on the way to town is Conoco Hill. This is also a strong rationale for fixing NM502 so it encourages cycling and walking.