Press Release by FREE NOW
FREE NOW, Europe’s leading multi-service mobility platform, published its latest electric vehicle transition insights on the occasion of the European Mobility Week, which started on September 16th. The company announced its initial sustainability strategy – Move To Net-Zero – in January 2021. The strategy includes immediate offsetting and long-term Net-Zero efforts, targeting 50% of rides being fully electric by 2025 andreducing emissions to zero by 2030. With this, FREE NOW aims to become the first mobility platform in Europe to reach Net-Zero emissions by 2030.
Already during this year, the leading mobility platform has been pushing the electrification of rides and, so far, FREE NOW’s BEV tours have increased by 71% with a 20% increase in active BEV drivers on the platform. Additionally, FREE NOW has integrated almost 130,000 new electric scooters, bikes and shared cars into the platform, Europe-wide, thanks to partnerships with brands like TIER, Voi, Emmy, Cooltra, MILES and SHARE NOW. With all of these actions, FREE NOW has become the mobility app with the biggest vehicle choice for consumers in Europe. By the end of 2021, FREE NOW expects to complete around 4 million rides with its multi mobility partners on the app.
What does BEV stand for?
The abbreviation BEV is short for Battery Electric Vehicle. This is an automobile sub-category that describes vehicles which run purely on electricity, powered by an internal battery.
Consumers across Europe prefer sustainable mobility options
In addition to FREE NOW promoting more sustainable modes of transportation in the app, the leading mobility platform has initiated its own survey: The study analyzes consumer mobility preferences and behaviours in Europe and it says that 7 out of 10 Europeans chose ‘very much’ or ‘to a certain extent’ when asked for their thoughts about moving with sustainable mobility services. Specifically, almost 50% of the Europeans surveyed said they value moving in electric vehicles ‘a lot’ and 65% would like to have a BEV default option in the app. 20% of Europeans would be willing to pay more for a BEV ride. FREE NOW has recently included a clean air fee in some of its markets to further accelerate investment in the transition from its standard fleet to electric vehicles and promote greener mobility.
FREE NOW has also launched a number of local projects to boost the electric transition of its fleet. In Spain for example, the leading mobility platform has reached agreements with car manufacturers to offer discounts on the purchase of electric taxis to its drivers and, in parallel, prioritise BEV tours in the app. The FREE NOW Spanish BEV fleet has increased by 272% and BEV taxi drivers are doing 220% more tours. In France, BEV tours have doubled since January and, since Spring, the company is helping drivers gain access to fast charging points in Paris, thanks to partnerships with RATP and Shell. As well in markets like Portugal, the proportion of BEV tours is in part above 26% already today.
Along with these local actions, the company is placing emphasis on educating and raising awareness amongst its stakeholders about the importance of 100% electric mobility for the sake of citizens and the environment.
Over 170,000 tons of CO2 emissions have been offset incl. tree planting in Europe
Globally, FREE NOW is working with Climate Partner to develop offset projects to compensate for the current output of CO2 emissions produced by both the company and its services. All of these projects are certified to the highest standards (Gold Standard or Verified Carbon Standard) and match with UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). The project’s focus is on renewable energy – which powers transportation, the core of FREE NOW’s services – and forest protection and reforestation, as emissions from their services and others can be bound within trees.
In total, FREE NOW is offsetting 173,000 tons of CO2 emissions with three projects. One in Madre de Dios, Peru (dedicated to protecting a threatened piece of the Amazon); a second in Indonesia (extending wind energy in the region and developing rural areas); and in a third, closer to home in Europe. It is supporting the reforestation and growth of local forests with regional tree planting.
FREE NOW supports the EU Mobility Week
From 16th-22nd September, FREE NOW will participate in the EU Mobility Week across all of its markets, with activities to promote sustainable urban mobility. Part of this week is the so-called Car Free Day. Based on the FREE NOW study, 32% of Europeans still prefer using their own car when moving around their city. Despite this, 68% believe that there are too many private cars in cities and 17% stress that dependency on cars is one of the main mobility difficulties in cities. Other issues are traffic and congestion (50%), parking difficulties (45%) and environmental concerns (26%), like pollution or noise.
Featured Image via Seat e-Mii in Barcelona