New York City has announced that Uber and Lyft will be required to have a 100% electric fleet within the next seven years as part of the efforts to improve the city’s environment and contribute to the global fight against climate change.
“Today, we are announcing that Uber and Lyft will be required to have a zero-emissions fleet by 2030. That’s zero emissions for over 100,000 vehicles on our city streets,” NYC Mayor Eric Adams said during his State of the City address Thursday.
Mayor Adams noted that the said goal “will be achieved with no new costs for individual drivers” but no details were provided yet on how the plan will be implemented.
Many Uber and Lyft drivers use their personal cars for multiple ride-hailing companies, and many of them operate on a tight budget, which means encouraging them to make the switch could be a challenge, TechCrunch reported.
Both companies have since indicated a positive response to the city’s planned requirement.
“New York’s commitment will accelerate an equitable city-wide transition to electric, and we’re eager to collaborate with the TLC on an ambitious plan for a rideshare clean mile standard,” said Paul Augustine, Lyft’s sustainability director, as per TechCrunch.
Last month, Lyft announced up to $7,500 off on certain electric vehicles “with federal incentives” for new drivers who will go electric, in a bid to encourage new ride-hailing drivers to opt for EVs.
Lyft has also said that nationwide data showed Lyft drivers using electric cars “earn over 40% more in tips per ride” than gas car drivers.
Uber, meanwhile, has also expressed support for the mayor’s 2030 environment goal.
“We applaud the Mayor’s ambition for reducing emissions, an important goal we share. Uber has been making real progress to become the first zero-emissions mobility platform in North America, and there’s much more to do,” senior director of policy at Uber, Josh Gold said, as per TechCrunch.
Uber has set a timeline for its “Road to Zero Emissions” goal, including the mission to get drivers to transition to EVs through the company’s Green Future program by 2025 and a 100% electric fleet in the U.S., Canada and Europe by 2030.
“As the largest mobility platform in the world, we know that our impact goes beyond our technology. We want to do our part to build back better and support a green recovery in our cities,” Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said.
New York City appears to be following California’s lead in pushing for EV transition.
In August 2022, California Gov. Gavin Newsom approved a new rule that will require 100% of new car sales in the state to be zero-emission by 2035.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul followed suit one month later, directing the State Department of Environmental Conservation to make a regulation that will require zero-emission sales of new passenger cars, SUVs and pickup trucks across the state by 2035.