In a virtual conference call, Uber has announced its plans for reaching zero emissions by 2040. The company will achieve this goal by swapping its existing car fleet out for electric vehicles over the next two decades.
Major cities in the US, Canada, and Europe will have full electric car fleets by 2030.
The company cited how city skies became clear for the first time in decades as a result of the COVID-19 lockdown, but that didn’t fix the problem. Instead, companies need to curb their emissions, and Uber wants to change.
And to start things off, Uber Green has been announced for 15 cities.
Transportation Must Curb Emissions
The transportation industry has had an emissions problem for decades. It currently accounts for 14% of global emissions. However, in more developed nations, transportation takes up a huge share of emissions.
For instance, in the United States, transportation produces the most emissions with a whopping 28%.
And while public transportation systems have improved greatly, ride-hailing services, like Uber, have not done much to solve the emissions problem. In fact, the situation has actually gotten worse.
A report earlier this year found that these types of services produce 69% more climate pollution than if the customers drove their own car.
Why Ride-hailing Services Cause More Pollution
That last stat may have left you puzzled. How can a service like Uber actually increase emissions instead of lowering them? Luckily, the answer is pretty simple.
Let’s say you want to go to the movie theatre from your home. If you had your own car, you would exit your home, enter your car and drive there and back. Simple right?
Well, if you decided to go by Uber, you would exit your home, an Uber driver would have to travel to your home, drive you to the theatre, come back to the theatre, and drive you home. Did you catch the problem?
There are two extra trips by the Uber driver. Traveling to your home to pick you up and traveling to the theatre to pick you up. Neither of these exists in the first scenario.
Now the situation is different if there are multiple passengers going to the same location, but that is not as common.
Thus, more emissions are released by using this service.
Electric Vehicles Can Fix It
Luckily, we already have a solution to transportation emissions, electric vehicles.
And Uber is going to be taking full advantage of them by switching their car fleet to them over the next two decades. This will also have another benefit, more electric cars will be sold and manufactured as a result.
As we all know, the more something is produced, the cheaper it gets. This could help lower the cost of electric vehicles and raise their popularity.