Always look on the bright side of a global pandemic: Lyft plans to emerge from the COVID-19 crisis to a “better, cleaner, and more sustainable” future. Specifically, one in which the ridesharing firm employs only electric vehicles.
Lyft on Wednesday announced plans to go 100 percent electric by 2030. In collaboration with Environmental Defense Fund, the company is working to transition drivers over to EVs, with the aim being to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and fuel consumption.
“Now more than ever, we need to work together to create cleaner, healthier, and more equitable communities,” Lyft President John Zimmer said in a statement. “Success breeds success, and if we do this right, it creates a path for others. If other rideshare and delivery companies, automakers, and rental car companies make this shift, it can be the catalyst for transforming transportation as a whole.”
The move, however, won’t be easy. It means transitioning every vehicle on Lyft’s platform—composed of independent contractors operating their own cars—over the next decade. Aside from touting the “potential benefits” of EVs (including lower fuel and maintenance costs), the firm did not directly address how it will accomplish its goal. In 2018, Lyft made all rides carbon-neutral through a carbon offsets program, and last year launched hundreds of EVs via Express Drive in Seattle, Atlanta, and Denver. “But to reach our commitment by the end of 2030, we will need to harness the power of Lyft and its partners to drive radical change,” the company explained.
“Getting there will require investing in clean energy to create jobs and reduce pollution, and radically shifting how we move people and products,” Fred Krupp, president of the Environmental Defense Fund, added. “Lyft’s commitment accelerates momentum toward this future and sets the standard for other tech and transportation leaders to follow suit.”