Airbnb has announced that over 850,000 of its host now offer electric vehicle charging as part of its amenities. This follows an upgrade that added a search filter for hostings with battery-electric vehicle charging capabilities to support those driving plug-in hybrids and BEVs. Between June and Dec. 2021, the search numbers for hostings with electric vehicle charging doubled. That totaled to over half a million unique searches by the end of last year.
Together with accommodating owners of electrified vehicles like PHEVs and BEVs, Airbnb supports sustainable travel through home-sharing. With 80 percent of U.S. consumers believing Airbnb helps people travel in a more environmentally-friendly manner, allowing customers to search for listings with EV charging support builds on this. Airbnb committed to becoming a Net Zero company by 2030 via reducing the emission of carbon and other types of greenhouse gases associated with its global operations. It is also investing in nature-based solutions to offset residual emissions.
In addition to its corporate goal, Airbnb is aiming to do more. It is consulting with its community of hosts and guests, environmental experts, and community leaders across the globe to see what else it can make its operations and activities more environmentally friendly. The company has also partnered with its Host Advisory Board to find ways to embed sustainably hosting practices and make them more available. These include piloting programs that enable hosts to switch to renewables and actively working to educate them on ways they can be more sustainable.
Last Nov., Airbnb revealed how it was going to become carbon neutral by 2030. This includes rapid decarbonization, which will add reduction targets for all areas of the business that creates emissions per the Paris Climate Agreement. This includes taking a look at operations to ensure the company itself makes use of renewable energy, partnering with corporate vendors to reduce their carbon footprint, and helping employees transition to more sustainable means of living including commuting via public transport and offering community solar and green utility programs.
The company will measure and publish the carbon and greenhouse gas footprint of its operations every year. Reports on how it’s progressing toward its targets will also be published on an annual basis. To counter residual emissions, Airbnb will invest in nature-based offsets to protect the environment as part of its participation in the LEAF Coalition. It is also developing its goals with inputs from sustainability leaders like Elizabeth Sturcken, Managing Direction of the Net Zero program at the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF). Sturcken is advising Airbnb on sustainability targets and strategies alongside other climate and sustainability experts.
Allowing guests to charge their electrified vehicles should help the company reduce its emissions. This should allow more people to take their BEVS and plug-in hybrids on long drives, resulting in reduced emissions during the time they’re on the road. Additionally, if the property uses sustainable energy, that reduces the carbon footprint of both the guest and host since they don’t need to take energy from the grid. Together with the ability to search for listing with EV charging capability, Airbnb is giving its customers more sustainable options for their travel needs, making its service more attractive to those wanting to reduce their carbon footprint.