On June 17th Lyft announced its commitment to reach 100% electrification across their fleet. This announcement is no surprise given Lyft’s repeated stance towards encouraging carbon reduction efforts across the board.
This is an interesting proposal however…for this to work a number of moving parts need to occur. Either the price of rides are going to increase – call it a carbon tax – for driving in an EV or Lyft will begin to take more out of driver’s cuts when providing them an EV to drive in. It could be a mix of both, but I figure it will be the later as we approach 2030.
Then comes the approval in various other states. The introduction of ride sharing has brought various challenges to cities dealing with the management of how and where ride share can fit into their mobility plans. The challenge is mostly on providing a 24/7 service even if it loses Lyft money. Public transport provides this today and with Lyft naturally taking some of that away it could result in people becoming too dependent on a private company which at any time could shut down operation or refuse rides to customers even if there are no drivers or if it is not affordable.
Why does government approval matter? It is their key to opening more markets in the US.
This whole EV push might be a way for them to pull local government support, get state EV incentives, and significant subsidies to Lyft to help with transport electrification.
Lyft or Uber will likely never replace publicly funded transport. But if they enter from a sustainability angle where the state doesn’t have to invest their tax payers money into a large fleet of EVs it could open up the states that didn’t sign up for the ride share hype early on.