Sustainable energy enters home-sharing community

Posted at 9:20 AM, Oct 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-10-19 13:36:09-04

Airbnb and SolarCity are teaming up to bring sustainable and affordable energy to home-sharers and travelers.

Through this deal, SolarCity would offer up to $1000 rebate to hosts of the Airbnb community who use solar panel systems. This rebate is only available to Airbnb members who live in a market where SolarCity operates.

Homeowners can choose the solar option that works best for their homes, and new and current SolarCity customers who become Airbnb hosts will get $100 Airbnb travel credit.

The partnership plays off of the already sustainable travel option. Based on methodology develped by Cleantech Group, Airbnb estimates that over the last year, by choosing the home-sharing option instead of hotels, Airbnb travelers in the U.S. have reduced:

  • Water consumption by 4.2 billion liters - the equivalent of 1,700 Olympic size swimming pools
  • Greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to keeping 560,000 cars off the road for a year
  • Waste generated by 37,000 metric tons
  • Energy consumption equivalent to the amount used by 280,000 homes in one year

"Cleantech Group estimated that the average Airbnb guest night results in 61% less CO2 emissions as compared to a night in a hotel," said Chris Lehane, Airbnb's Head of Global Public Policy & Communications. "At the same time, Airbnb is an economic empowerment tool for hosts who can use their homes - typically their greatest expense - to share space and generate a little extra money to pay the bills."

Solar energy provides homeowners with an alternative to utility power which is more sustainable and costs less.

"Homeowners that make the simple switch to solar energy can save money on utility bills and fix their energy costs for years to come," said Toby Corey, President of Global Sales and Customer Experience for SolarCity.

Both companies are encouraged by the possibilities of the partnership, and the sustainable and economic benefits it will bring to the tourism markets.