Uber is taking on air pollution in London with an unconventional solution for a private company that would see all vehicles used in the app go electric by 2025
Uber is introducing a ‘clean air fee’ to all routes in London that will be used to support Uber drivers across London to upgrade to an electric vehicle. The fee under consideration would be around 15p per mile for all Uber fares booked in and around London. The fee would cost passengers an estimated 60 cents per trip, on average, and would add up to US$ 260 million over the next few years. Furthermore, the Uber will use proceeds from the new fee to give drivers a financial incentive to help them switch over to an electric car. The amount each driver gets is based on how much they drive on the app.
Uber’s chief executive officer Dara Khosrowshahi said that the new electric vehicle fee would be “a long-term investment in the future of London aimed at going all electric in the capital in 2025.” Uber’s initiative to support electric vehicles is based on the UK government’s decision to reduce subsidies for green cars. Enabling drivers to switch to electric is more than just putting cash into their hands, as Uber is also working to beef up the fast charging network in the city.
Uber has partnered with ChargePoint to provide access to a number of DC fast chargers in central London and plans to expand it. The company also plans to work with other charging industry to enhance service of existing charging network. The new fees are an innovative way for Uber to effectively levy a carbon tax on customers that it can then use to subsidize driving electric for its growing fleet of drivers.