Are We on the Road to Carbon Neutrality Thanks to Shared Mobility?


The modern world is slowly but surely starting to get aware of the importance of preserving our environment. One example that showcases this is when popular ridesharing providers started working towards carbon-neutral rides. But is enough being done and are there any roadblocks as we move to carbon neutrality? Let’s find out.

The popularity of ride-sharing apps

Given how long they’ve been around, most people have grown accustomed to using ride-sharing apps. Partially, this is also thanks to the existence of driving license checker technology that weeds out drivers who would try to get away with presenting a fake document as well as bad actors in general. Everything considered, the popularity of ride-sharing apps is undeniable.

There is but one question. Does ride-sharing truly reduce pollution? At first glance, the answer might be ‘yes’. However, keep in mind that ride-sharing is so affordable and convenient that people often use it as their preferred means of transport, meaning they are less likely to take the bus. As you can imagine, this is bound to take a toll on the environment in the long run.

Electric vehicles – a savior in the making?

Once electric vehicles become the norm, this will reset the entire equation. We’re not quite there yet, but even now, a certain percentage of traffic consists of hybrid vehicles and it’s only going to get better in the future. In fact, most European countries have pledged to banish non-electric vehicles from the roads by 2035, with some determined to reach the goal even by 2030. Ride-sharing companies like Lyft also share the sentiment and have thus pledged to be moving towards the same goal.

During the pandemic, Uber announced the company would gradually start moving in the zero-emission direction, emphasizing the benefits of micro-mobility alternatives such as bikes. In other words, using such means of transport will mean less fees for the driver compared to traditional vehicles. As you can see, steps are being taken towards an emission-free environment even now, despite the fact that electric vehicles are by no means the norm quite yet.

Electric vehicles don’t produce zero emissions

Since they need to be charged, electric vehicles still aren’t 100% synonymous with zero emissions. On top of that, making the switch to electric vehicles on a global scale is not something that can be achieved overnight. Therefore, the focus should be on carbon offsetting.

In practice, this means calculating the carbon footprint on every occasion while taking factors such as fuel consumption and distance traveled into the equation. As luck would have it, carbon footprint calculators are now being integrated into ride-sharing apps, which means that customers can stay informed on how their trip will impact the environment.

To conclude

In the current state of technology, shared mobility is not yet synonymous with carbon neutrality. However, numerous incentives are gradually moving the needle in the right direction, so it’s only a matter of time before the finish line is within our reach through a global embrace of electric vehicles. Until then, aiming for a compromise by encouraging the use of bikes seems to be one of the best solutions.

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