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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Uber's big new IPO prospectus touts the company's green ambitions as it prepares for its multibillion dollar offering — and acknowledges that environmental policy is a risk factor.

Why it matters: Uber is going public amid growing scrutiny of ride-hailing's carbon footprint as research shows it can boost emissions by cannibalizing mass-transit and increasing miles driven.

Threat level: A line tucked into the global company's filing with securities regulators caught my attention. In the lengthy section about various risks, Uber acknowledges...

"[B]ecause a substantial portion of our business involves vehicles that run on fossil fuels, laws, regulations, or governmental actions seeking to curb air pollution or emissions may impact our business."

Where it stands: The filing says Uber aspires to play a "meaningful role in creating a sustainable, low-carbon future and addressing environmental challenges."

  • "We believe that a transportation system based on personal car use is inefficient and unsustainable," it states.
  • The document touts several of the company's environmental and anti-congestion initiatives in the U.S. and internationally.
  • For instance, it notes work with regulators in German cities to deploy electric vehicles and dockless electric bikes.

Between the lines: The role of ride-hailing and new mobility services generally is something of a wildcard in the future of urban carbon emissions.

  • A number of experts say it's increasingly important for regulators to take more steps to ensure the explosive growth of ride-hailing doesn't bring a corresponding jump in CO2.
  • Transportation is already the largest source of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions.

What they're saying: Populus CEO Regina Clewlow, whose company provides a transportation data analytics platform for local governments, says it's up to cities to keep the environmental effects of mobility companies in check.

  • "[C]ities need to require access to data from mobility operators, as well as invest in their own data collection efforts to measure the impacts of Uber and other services," she adds.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

27 mins ago - World

U.S. strikes Iran-backed militia structures in Syria

President Biden at the Pentagon on Feb. 10. Photo: Alex Brandon - Pool/Getty Images

The United States on Thursday carried out an airstrike against facilities in Syria linked to an Iran-backed militia group, the Pentagon announced.

The state of play: The strike, approved by President Biden, comes "in response to recent attacks against American and Coalition personnel in Iraq, and to ongoing threats to those personnel," Pentagon press secretary John Kirby said in a statement.

Senate parliamentarian rules $15 minimum wage cannot be included in relief package

Photo: Al Drago/Getty Images

The Senate parliamentarian ruled Thursday that the provision to increase the minimum wage to $15/hour cannot be included in the broader $1.9 trillion COVID relief package.

Why it matters: It's now very likely that any increase in the minimum wage will need bipartisan support, as the provision cannot be passed with the simple Senate majority that Democrats are aiming to use for President Biden's rescue bill.

Dave Lawler, author of World
47 mins ago - World

Biden's big Saudi reset

Mohammed bin Salman. Photo: Ryad Kramdi/AFP via Getty

President Biden spoke with Saudi Arabia's King Salman this evening ahead of the release of a CIA report expected to implicate the king's son, and the kingdom's de facto ruler, in the murder of a U.S.-based journalist, Jamal Khashoggi.

Why it matters: In one month, Biden has ended support for the Saudi war effort in Yemen, frozen a large arms deal and snubbed Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) by declining to speak with him directly.