As the world struggles with climate change and US President Donald Trump exits the Paris Climate Agreement, local cab aggregator Ola and its riders are working towards reducing carbon emissions. The cab aggregator’s sharing service has already registered a 500% growth in the last one year, thereby doing their bit in curbing carbon emissions and reducing traffic congestion.
Ola Cabs, which has usually engaged its audience with brand communication ranging from promoting digital payments and feminism, and raising an alarm against drunken driving, is now addressing the concern of climate change through the latest brand communication. The year-long digital media campaign #FarakPadtaHai was kick-started by cricketer-turned-commentator, Virender Sehwag on Twitter. Sehwag is a resident of New Delhi, which has more than one crore registered vehicles. He urged people to carpool in order to reduce traffic congestion and carbon emission.
India is infamous for its traffic indiscipline and congested roads but it seems to have found a solution for vehicle pollution and endless traffic jams with carpooling. According to a research by the car aggregator, following a methodology design by World Resource Institute (WRI), Ola Share has effectively reduced 12 million kilograms of carbon dioxide and saved over 7 million litres of fuel with the distance travel by cabs reduced by 84 million kilometres, since its inception. The top five cities that embraced the sharing service were Delhi, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Kolkata.
The campaign conceptualised and executed by Ola addresses the notion that no protest rallies, consequences of flouting traffic rules and not even suffering that vehicular pollution brings can make a tangible difference. The #FarakPadtaHai campaign drives the idea that when people collectively work towards a common goal, a significant difference can be made for the environment.
As part of the #FarakPadtaHai campaign, Ola partnered with Traffic Police Departments across key cities such as Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Pune and Noida. In Noida, Vikas Jaiswal, Dy. SP-Traffic Noida, met with commuters and urged them to carpool. He also handed out saplings to commuters across key traffic junctions in the cities.
As part of the campaign Ola aims to encourage commuters to share their rides by selling Share Pass (a subscription product that allows customers to take Ola Share rides at a flat fixed price) at Re.1 from June 5 - 11, 2017. Currently, Share Pass has already pre-sold 20 million+ Ola Share rides. The popularity of the share service has resulted in Ola expanding the service of the category from seven to 26 cities in a span of 19 months.