What Does Ridesharing Replace?
Ridesharing tends to replace private car, taxi, or walking trips and has led to modest increases in total vehicle miles traveled and greenhouse gas emissions.
- A majority of travelers would have used a car or taxi or walked had ridesharing not been available.
- In some large cities, ridesharing replaces a significant portion of public transit trips.
- Nationally, ridesharing has led to modest increases in total vehicle miles traveled and greenhouse gas emissions—0.08 percent and 0.14 percent, respectively.
- The effects of ridesharing on vehicle miles traveled and emissions vary considerably by city, partly because of differences in each city's drivability and public transit options. For example, San Francisco sees an increase in vehicle miles traveled of 1.38 percent.
- If policymakers regulate ridesharing to reduce traffic congestion, it may be beneficial to do so at a local level to account for the different impacts from city to city.
Ridesharing services such as Uber and Lyft are an increasingly popular mode option for many travelers. Yet little is known about the effects of this mode on travel behavior and other social impacts, such as public transit use, traffic, and pollution. In this paper, we estimate the effects of the availability of ridesharing on travel mode choices made in a large sample of metropolitan areas. We do so by estimating a discrete choice model of household mode choice using a nationally representative dataset of travel behavior and simulating household mode choices in a setting where ridesharing were not available. We find that a majority of travelers would have used a car, taxi, or walked had ridesharing not been available. In some large cities, however, ridesharing displaces a significant portion of public transit trips. We find that the availability of ridesharing has led to modest increases in total vehicle miles traveled and greenhouse gas emissions. Moreover, the impacts of ridesharing could be heterogeneous across cities, which are related to each city’s drivability and public transit use.
Assistant Professor, Peking University
Common Resources — Mar 30, 2023
Insights Gained from the Past Decade of Federal Standards for Passenger Vehicle Fuel Economy and Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Who has benefited the most from the tighter federal fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards for passenger vehicles?
Working Paper — Mar 21, 2023
Emissions Standards and Electric Vehicle Targets for Passenger Vehicles
This working paper analyzes welfare and distributional effects of nested US policies affecting plug-in vehicles: state-level zero-emission vehicle standards and national fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards for passenger vehicles.
Working Paper — Mar 15, 2023
Vehicle Attribute Tradeoffs and the Distributional Effects of US Fuel Economy and Greenhouse Gas Emissions Standards
This working paper presents welfare and distributional effects of US passenger vehicle fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards between 2012 and 2022.