Uber Commits to Carbon-Free Rides by 2040

Uber says every vehicle on its ride-hailing platform will be electric by 2040. It vowed to contribute $800 million to help drivers make this transition.

Uber  (UBER) - Get Report plans to spend $800 million over the next five years to help its drivers switch to battery-operated electric cars as the ride-hailing service aims to become carbon-free by 2040.

Uber said that all its drivers across the U.S., Canada and Europe will transition to electric vehicles by 2030. 

"Uber is committing to become a fully zero-emission platform by 2040, with 100% of rides taking place in zero-emission vehicles, on public transit, or with micro-mobility," Chief Executive Dara Khosrowshahi said in a company blog post. 

"We’re also setting an earlier goal to have 100% of rides take place in electric vehicles in US, Canadian, and European cities by 2030." 

Uber added that it could achieve its 2030 goal in any major city where it can work with local stakeholders to implement policies that ensure a fair transition to EVs for drivers. 

"This is a start, and we expect to be judged against our actions," the executive said.

"The ultimate success of our business will rest on our ability to transition our platform to clean energy in partnership with drivers, industry innovators, and governments."

The San Francisco company added that drivers who choose to drive greener and electric vehicles will earn as much as $1.50 extra on each trip in addition to saving more as well. 

Ride-hailing trips result in an estimated 69% more climate pollution on average than the trips they displace, according to findings of a February 2020 study of six major U.S. cities published by the Union of Concerned Scientists.

In July, Lyft, Uber's biggest rival in the U.S., also committed to 100% electric cars on its platform by 2030. Uber and Lyft do not own the cars operated by drivers or riders.

Last month a judge in California ordered Uber and its rival, Lyft,  (LYFT) - Get Report to reclassify their drivers as employees instead of contractors. As contractors, the drivers don't receive benefits that employees get. The company argues that its drivers prefer the flexibility that comes with contract work.

At last check, Uber shares were up 3.8% at $34.51. Lyft shares rose 4.6% to $30.29.