Uber has expanded its Uber Green program to more than 1,400 North American cities in an effort to incentivize drivers to use all-electric and hybrid vehicles. New locations include Austin, Houston, Miami, and New York City. The company’s plan is to become a zero-emission platform by 2040.
Uber Green allows customers to request electric or hybrid vehicles. Drivers with those types of vehicles receive an extra $0.50 from a $1 rider surcharge for every Uber Green trip they complete. Uber released a statement, saying it’s integrating Uber Green into its Uber Pass membership service. Members will receive ten percent off on green tips—which is the same discount provided for a standard ride.
The success of Uber Green will be based on the company’s ability to get drivers to make the switch to electric or hybrid vehicles. Eight hundred million dollars has been set aside to get drivers to use eco-friendly vehicles by 2025.
In an effort to meet their goal, Uber is partnering with automakers, charging network providers, and electric vehicle rental and fleet companies to provide drivers and passengers with even more incentives. Companies include Avis, Ample, and EVgo.
According to Uber, drivers have the option of renting electric vehicles in Los Angeles through a partnership with Avis. The program will expand nationwide sometime in 2021. Ample lets drivers in San Francisco rent a vehicle with Ample battery swapping technology, which lets them switch out an electric vehicle battery in minutes. The partnership with EVgo gives drivers access to charging discounts at more than 800 U.S. locations.
Uber’s goal of being a zero-emission company by 2040 will require more than getting drivers and riders to use electric vehicles. The company is expanding other programs as well, including programs for public transit users. A journey-planning feature accessed through the company app lets users plan their public transit journey. This includes walking directions to stations and real-time schedules. The feature is available for users in Atlanta, Auckland, Brisbane, Buenos Aires, Guadalajara, Philadelphia, Rome, Bangalore, Chennai, and Mumbai.
Uber is also looking to bring a multimodal trip planner that combines ride-hailing with walking directions and city bus, subway, or train connections to Mexico City and London. The feature has launched in Sydney and Chicago.
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