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Ecological Impact of ride sharing companies – A Perspective


1.0 Introduction

2.0 Uber Bus – Collaboration with public transport

3.0 Innovative services – A sustainable solution

4.0 The ecological impact of ride-sharing apps

5.0 Conclusion



Owning a car in the US has always been a mandate, one cannot survive without it, and it is definitely a necessity.  If you do not own a car, life is a struggle for you; especially if you stay on the outskirts of a city.  First thing as a new immigrant in the US, what a person needs to do is to study the material that MVC provides, give a test, and get a driving license.


Things have indeed changed rapidly now with the evolution of technology and innovation.  Ridesharing companies have made things pretty easy for everyone and changed the dynamics of people’s lifestyles.  Uber was launched in 2011 and within years went global. Today it is a multi-billion dollar company.  Uber had its ups and down which gave rise to competitors like Lyft to make their way through.

Now with the pandemic hitting the transportation industry as a whole, these ride-sharing companies are making strides to collaborate and work with public transit systems and leverage their software or platforms to make life easy and efficient for public transit; including the bus services. 

Uber Bus – Collaboration of Public Transit

Uber is successfully collaborating with public transit systems including bus services which have been drastically impacted due to the pandemic. Now people will be able to book bus tickets using Uber and similar apps.  In the past two years, more than 120 public transit companies in the US have collaborated with ride-sharing companies.  This is now increasing and going global with the pandemic since it will be a win-win for both parties. The ride-sharing companies will provide their technology and platform to the transit companies.  This platform will help the transit companies with data; which will eventually help in cost savings and new business opportunities; but also indirectly impact the environment as we would see fewer buses and more passengers leveraging these services, hence less pollution.

Lyft on the other hand is also partnering with local governments, transit systems, and non-profits; in order to promote public transit and transport. It already provides schedules for public transits like trains and bus schedules on its app along with providing few other similar services.  It is running a paratransit ride-on-demand service with RTC of Southern Nevada.  Both people of disability ADA (Americans with Disability Act) and non-ADA are effectively provided this service.


Innovative services – A sustainable solution

Both Uber and Lyft are likely to contribute to reducing the carbon footprint and pollution.  They are both taking vigorous steps to showcase their drive and commitment towards a clean and green environment.  Both companies have introduced programs and services to reduce their carbon footprint.

While Uber with its bike or scooter rental service and investment in lime (scooter rental company) is making headlines, Lyft as well, on the other hand, is providing scooter rental service on its app.  This has encouraged many entrepreneurs and startups to come up with solutions to introduce clean and efficient transit and ridesharing products and services.

Besides this, both companies are encouraging customers to go for their pool services by offering lesser rates and better services.  This in exchange reduces the number of cars on the road thus contributing towards reducing greenhouse gases.

Besides these initiatives, Uber in particular is investing in flight taxi services. These taxis will be small, electric aircraft that will operate in cities.  These taxis with zero emissions will contribute to a faster and more sustainable and clean future once rolled off.

Lastly, both companies are encouraging and incentivizing drivers using electric cars and vehicles to provide services to their customers.  All these innovative services depict steps towards a green and brighter future.

The Ecological Impact of ride-sharing services

Uber, Lyft, Car2go are some of the apps you would find on the handsets of many millennial & generation z’s cell phones.   These apps are disruptors and make life very easy for people.  While there are studies being carried out on the ecological and environmental impacts these apps have made, these apps have definitely helped in reducing the number of cars on the road with their services and offerings.  The lesser the number of cars on the road, the lesser will be the traffic and congestion on the road and hopefully lesser pollution. 

The electric bike renting, incentivizing electric vehicle drivers, and encouraging pool services are innovative ways of curbing the emission of gases that harm the environment. 


The current pandemic has forced ride-sharing companies and public transit systems that previously were competing, to come together and leverage each other’s strengths.  This symbiotic relationship is benefiting consumers as well as helping in conserving our ecosystem.  Such services need to be encouraged and leveraged.

Technology and innovative solutions are making our lives uncomplicated.  However, we need to make sure that they do not impact our planet’s ecosystem.  The awareness of reducing the impact of carbon emissions in the environment and reducing the usage of fossil fuel are forcing inventors, designers, engineers, and innovators to come up with sustainable solutions.  Ridesharing companies and the steps that they are taking in enhancing and pushing solutions that will be sustainable are commendable.   They are in a way contributing immensely to reducing the effect of greenhouse gases.   

Climate change is real and is impacting us intensely, so we as consumers need to make choices and leverage such services along with weighing how a particular service is beneficial not only to us but also in conserving our planet. 



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