In Brief

Uber vehicle fleet to be fully electric by 2040

Ride-hailing company is setting 2030 target for UK in new plan to tackle climate crisis

Uber has pledged to go fully electric in a push to “aggressively tackle the challenge of climate change”.

The ride-hailing app is to invest $800m (£614m) to help all of the platform’s millions of drivers worldwide switch to electric vehicles (EVs) by 2040 - with an earlier target date of 2030 in US, Canadian and European cities.

In a blog post announcing the plans, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said that the world was “at a critical juncture, and we all have a role to play”.

“While we’re not the first to set ambitious goals in transitioning to EVs, we intend to be the first to make it happen,” he continued, adding:  “It’s the right thing to do for our customers, our cities, our shareholders, and the planet we all share.”

As the BBC reports, “Uber and smaller rival Lyft have faced ongoing criticism for their role contributing to traffic and air pollution, with research showing many of their rides replace less polluting alternatives, like walking, biking, or taking public transport”.

Uber’s pledge to go green has been welcomed by environmentalists in countries across the globe, including the UK, where the government is set to ban the sale of new petrol, diesel and hybrid vehicles by 2035.

Transport Minister Grant Shapps said the move would benefit Uber drivers and users and “improve the quality of air we breathe”, reports Sky News

William Todts, executive director of the Transport & Environment campaign group, also praised Uber’s commitment to “rapidly electrify its fleet”, UK Investor Magazine reports. 

Todts said: “Now it’s time for Europe’s city mayors to show leadership. We need all big cities in Europe to introduce zero-emission zones, new pop-up bike lanes and cycle-only corridors, while also providing easy access to charging at home, at work and wherever people park.” 

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