Uber levies green tax on London

Transport company Uber is to charge Londoners an additional 15 pence per mile from early next year, saying the money will be used to fund environmental initiatives.

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“Every penny” of the so-called “clean air fee” will be used to help drivers change their cars to electric ones as well as for “other clean air initiatives”, Uber announced on 23 October.

The fee will add an extra 45 pence to the average journey, the company estimates. It said it expects the initiative to raise a total of £200 million over “the next few years”.

“The Mayor of London has set out a bold vision to tackle air pollution in the capital and we’re determined to do everything we can to back it,” said Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi. “Our £200 million Clean Air Plan is a long-term investment in the future of London aimed at going all electric in the capital in 2025.”

A driver who works 40 hours per week for Uber can expect to gain about £1,500 per year towards the cost of an electric car through the fee, the company said. It expects 20,000 of its drivers to have switched to electric vehicles by 2021.

Uber said it is also working with other companies to improve London’s infrastructure for charging electric vehicles. In addition, it is encouraging members of the public to scrap their old diesel vehicles, which are heavily polluters, by offering credit worth up to £1,500 to the first 1,000 people to do so.

Words: Craig Nicholson
Photo: Steevven1

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