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Uber and Lyft Will Be the Subjects of an Environmental Impact Study

The ride-hailing companies' claim that they help reduce car ownership is being put to the test.

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The National Research Defense Council and the University of California–Berkeley are teaming up for a yearlong study of the environmental impacts of ride-hailing companies like Uber and Lyft. The researchers will take a hard look at the claims by those companies that the rise in ride-hailing corresponds with a drop in personal car ownership. And as an added bonus, they’ll be doing it with cooperation from those two companies.

Ride-hailing companies have pushed back against the idea that their explosive growth over the last few years has led to more, not fewer, cars on the road. Earlier this year, Uber clashed with the city of New York over an attempt by Mayor Bill de Blasio to cap the San Francisco company’s growth in his city at 1 percent while the effects of ride-hailing on traffic and pollution could be studied. Uber carpet bombed the city with negative advertising and de Blasio eventually rescinded his plan.

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