Airbnb partners with the UNWTO to promote sustainable tourism

Airbnb is proud to be joining the World Tourism Organisation’s International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development campaign to help make travel greener worldwide. #IY2017 is a year-long campaign of the United Nations 70th General Assembly in collaboration with governments, UN agencies, international and regional organizations as well as the private sector.

At Airbnb, we owe our growth in no small part to interest in sustainable travel:

72 percent of our guests say the environmental benefits of home sharing were of at least some importance in their choice of Airbnb.

We constantly seek ways to seamlessly integrate sustainable practices into our platform, whether through everyday steps hosts can take with their listings, or partnerships with solar-panel and smart-home tech companies to reward our hosts for adopting energy-saving tools, or educational efforts to help hosts prepare guests for local environmental challenges such as droughts. As a result, guests staying in Airbnb listings rather than traditional accommodations in Europe, for example, during the calendar year 2016:

  • achieved energy savings equal to 566,000 homes
  • reduced water usage equal to 9,000 Olympic-sized swimming pools
  • reduced greenhouse gas emissions equal to 1.6 million cars

UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai said:

“UNWTO is very pleased to welcome Airbnb as one of the partners of the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development.  This is a unique opportunity to raise awareness of the contribution of sustainable tourism to development among public and private sector decision-makers and the public, while mobilizing all stakeholders in the sector to work together in making tourism a catalyst for positive change.”

At Airbnb, we envision a world in which anyone can belong anywhere, and we’re committed to working with cities and rural areas around the world to enact policies that enable this sense of belonging through hosting that grows responsibly and sustainably. #IY2017 is a unique opportunity for government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and the private sector to join forces and increase awareness and means of sustainable travel. We’re excited to work with our community in this ongoing effort and will be announcing additional opportunities to get involved this summer. We hope you’ll join us in celebrating 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development.


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