Economy

Uber prices to go up as part of new clean air plan

Uber prices to go up as part of new clean air plan”

To meet these ambitious targets, Uber has unveiled a "Clear Air Plan" that includes a new "Clean Air Fund", a diesel vehicle scrappage scheme and an EV charger network in London. Uber will give £1,500 in Uber credits to the first 1,000 Londoners who scrap a diesel vehicle that adheres to pre-Euro 4 emissions standards.

Britain will ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars from 2040, replicating plans by France and cities such as Madrid, Mexico City and Athens.

Whether Uber can in fact get its 40,000 London drivers to make the switch to electric cars within eight years, or hybrids as a bridge vehicle within two, could prove an interesting test of how hard or easy those transitions will be.

The company made the announcement in London on Friday, receiving widespread media coverage.

By the end of 2019, every UberX auto in London will be 100-per cent hybrid or fully electric with no diesel vehicles on the app.

The company became the latest to launch a diesel scrappage scheme today, vowing to remove 1,000 of the most polluting vehicles from London's roads by giving £1.5m to customers. That might appeal to passengers, but obviously it won't help drivers who still need to work while they save for a new electric or hybrid vehicle.

Uber will also be installing a network of rapid chargers that will be exclusively used by Uber drivers with electric vehicles. And we'll be giving you plenty of updates over the coming months and years as to the status of your vehicle on the Uber app. However, with numerous company's drivers already using a variety of hybrid models such as the Toyota Prius, most will already meet the future criteria.

Fred Jones, Uber's head of United Kingdom cities, said: "Air pollution is a growing problem and we're determined to play our part in tackling it with this bold plan". Uber is putting £2 million ($2.6 million) of its own money towards the grant. If the company is successful in its ambitions, it could be the start of a much larger, global effort.

Several carmakers have announced plans in recent months to electrify a large proportion of their new cars, with Volvo [GEELY.UL] becoming the first major carmaker to set a date for phasing out vehicles powered exclusively by the internal combustion engine. A 2019 switchover, therefore, might be a little optimistic.



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