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Uber Wants to Go All-Electric in London, With the Help of a New Clean Air Fee

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Picture Credit: Uber

Uber wants its service to be completely electrical in London, England from 2025.

The company announced Tuesday that it plans to increase pound;200 million ($260 million) to help all its drivers in town change to electrical vehicles.

The transfer follows Mayor Sadiq Khan's June announcement that diesel and high-polluting vehicles will be billed pound & a;12.50 ($16.20) daily fee, beginning in 2021.

“The Mayor of London has put a bold vision to handle air pollution from the capital, and we’re determined to do whatever we can to back it,” said Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, in a statement.

Uber's $260 million Clean Air Plan signifies a long-term investment in the future of London, he also added. “Over time, it’s our goal to help people replace their car with their phone by offering a range of mobility options — whether cars, bikes, scooters, or public transport — all in the Uber app. ”

The new”clean air fee” of 15p ($.19) per mile on each excursion in London will be used to provide financial aid to motorists who want to purchase an EV. Someone working with the app for around 40 hours per week is expected to get around £3,000 ($3,894) toward an EV in two decades ' time. 

Under the scheme, Uber estimates that around 20,000 London drivers might go electrical . There are now 45,000 licensed Uber drivers working from town and over 3.5 million riders using the stage, CNBC accounts

Adam Gromis, Uber’s lead to sustainability and ecological effect, told GTM earlier this year that the outcomes of an early pilot at London showed positive results in fostering the amount of EV miles traveled. When 60 electrical cars were added to the ridesharing system for only four weeks, they donated 40,000 rides.

However, the downside, the pilot demonstrated that EV charging and prices options continue to be barriers, which is precisely why continued to expand EV infrastructure is another essential element of Uber's Clean Air Plan at London. 

Uber has already teamed up with several home-charging suppliers — including BP ChargeMaster, EO Charging, EVBox, Franklin Energy, NewMotion, Pod Point and Swarco EVolt — to supply more affordable charging options to motorists using the app. Uber is additionally working together with ChargePoint and other industry players to expand public charging. 

Another component of the Clean Air Plan is Uber's diesel scrappage scheme, targeted at eliminating some of their deadliest cars out of London’s roads. The first 1,000 people in London to prove they've fought a old (pre-Euro 4 emission standard) diesel vehicle will be given a credit up to pound;1,500 ($1,932) to spend on Uber or even uberPOOL rides. Early next year, the plan will launch. 

Uber has had a relationship with London previously. Under prior CEO Travis Kalanick, the ride-hailing agency needed its license revoked over”a lack of corporate responsibility,” which could have public security and safety implications, according to London regulators.

Uber's new CEO, Khosrowshahi, has made getting back into London a priority since taking the job just over a year ago. During the summer, the company obtained a permit enabling it to reboot operations.

As Uber appears to rebuild its relationship with London through its new EV app, it's also discovering ways to expand EV adoption from the U.S.

Competitor Lyft is doing the exact same. The company was working with General Motors to deploy an autonomous electric vehicle fleet.  Following President Trump announced he’d pull on the U.S. from their Paris climate agreement, Lyft announced it intends to provide at least 1 billion dollars annually using autonomous electrical vehicles from 2025.

According to Wood Mackenzie, there could be as many as 22 million autonomous electrical vehicles worldwide by 2040, which could begin to introduce a”key risk” to oil requirement.

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