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Lyft Commits to Full Carbon Neutrality, 100% Renewables

Image credit: Lyft

Earlier this year, we announced our Green Cities Initiative, a new business unit dedicating significant resources to tackling climate change. As Lyft continues to grow, we have an increasing responsibility to commit additional resources towards our values in order to maximize the positive impact of the Lyft platform.

Our first step was to create a carbon offset program, a multi-million dollar investment in 2018 alone offsetting over a million metric tons of carbon. This ensures all Lyft rides are carbon neutral, and has made Lyft one of the top 10 voluntary purchasers of carbon offsets on the planet. Lyft has also partnered with public transit agencies across the US, set a goal to achieve 50 percent shared rides by the end of 2020, and launched a bikes & scooters program.

With the 2018 Global Climate Action Summit kicking off in San Francisco this week, we’re excited to take our pledge two steps further. First, we’re now purchasing enough carbon offsets to neutralize the remainder of our emissions, making Lyft a fully carbon neutral company.

Second, we’re committing to purchase enough renewable energy to cover the electricity consumption of every Lyft office space, driver hub and electric vehicle mile on our platform. Where available, we will purchase clean energy directly from our local utility partners. Our first direct renewable energy purchase is in San Francisco through the city’s CleanPowerSF program, in partnership with our facility manager, McCarthy Cook. We look forward to working with our local utility partners in other cities to replicate this direct supply model everywhere we can.

Where direct renewable energy supply is not yet available, we’re purchasing renewable energy credits (RECs) through our partner, 3Degrees. These RECs are sourced to meet leading environmental standards to ensure that our, and our electric vehicle drivers’, net electricity usage is 100 percent renewable going forward. The credits come from renewable energy projects generating clean power on the same regional electricity grids that we use to power our offices and driver hubs, and that our electric vehicle drivers use to charge their cars. Among these regional projects are wind farms in Maine and Colorado, a woody biomass facility in Georgia, and a dairy digester in Michigan.

While the choices available in some of our key markets today are imperfect, these renewable energy options represent an immediate action we can take. Over time, we’ll work to establish the direct supply of renewables with utilities and EV charging providers everywhere it’s needed.

As world leaders convene in San Francisco to address the urgent threat of climate change, we’re doubling down on our climate and clean energy commitments. And in the months and years ahead, we look forward to working with public and private partners to drive carbon out of the transportation system.

Sam Arons is Director of Sustainability at Lyft. Sam joined Lyft in 2018 after 10 years at Google, where he developed the company’s sustainability efforts as Senior Lead for Energy & Infrastructure. Prior to his time with Google, Sam… [Read more about Sam Arons]

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