California May Soon Mandate Uber & Lyft Shift To Electric Vehicles

Uber Lyft

California wants more EVs for Uber and Lyft, and may have a plan to make that happen. People who drive for Uber and Lyft often heavily depend on that income, whether it is secondary or primary. The demand for these services has been much lower lately due to the current pandemic, which is hurting them.

For people like me, without a car, I used Uber often until the pandemic struck and I stayed home and started using Instacart to have my groceries delivered. I chose this method because just like with Uber and Lyft, these drivers depend on their tips and income.

Despite the ongoing pandemic, though, California believes now is the time for Uber and Lyft to get their act together environmentally. The state is planning to mandate a phased shift to electric vehicles for transportation network companies. In a public workshop held last week (via a conference call), the California Air Resources Board (CARB) talked about how it is going to do this.

The Big Problem with Uber & Lyft

Carbon Footprint

The main issue Uber & Lyft have is that transportation networks such as these contribute about 1% of California’s greenhouse gas emissions for the light-duty vehicle sector. That amount is growing rapidly — or was until the state went into lockdown. The state also noted that transportation in general contributes to half of the state’s greenhouse gas emissions. 70% of that comes from light-duty vehicles.

You may think, “well, people are going to be driving anyway,” but there are a few ways that Uber and Lyft add to emissions rather than simply replacing them.

Deadhead Miles

The state released some data in 2019: 39% of ride-hailing trips are “deadhead miles.” This term refers to miles driven by the driver returning to or from the trip. This creates 50% more greenhouse-gas emissions than the average car trip. You wouldn’t drive to work and then back home in the morning and then repeat that in the evening […]

via California May Soon Mandate Uber & Lyft Shift To Electric Vehicles — Uber Lyft

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