A Swedish platform allows electric car drivers to charge their vehicles in private homes, at a cost determined by the homeowner.
The sharing economy is part of the fabric of our modern lives. Websites and apps such as AirBnB, Car2Go, LeftoverSwap and Fon allow people to sleep in stranger’s houses, share cars, eat each other’s leftovers and access free wifi. So why not share your electricity with an electric car owner?
The biggest issue for electric car owners is the need to recharge their car battery. In fact, according to a survey by Renault, 51% of Swedes still see it as the biggest obstacle to purchasing an electric vehicle.
The concept behind Elbnb is simple, and very similar to Airbnb (as evidenced by its name). Those wishing to share their electricity simply register on the website, give their address, and specify the number and type of available sockets as well as maximum power at the socket. The charging station(s) will then appear on a map. There are currently already 1503 registered charging points.
The price of the electricity is settled between the homeowner and the car driver; the platform merely serves as a connection tool. Elbnb is powered by Renault, the French automobile manufacturer.
Elbnb is part of a worldwide trend to promote the purchase and use of electric cars. In 2015, Tesla, the well-known electric car manufacturer, partnered with Airbnb to equip some popular rental homes in California with charging stations. And Norway is planning to ban the sale of gasoline and benzene cars by 2025, a remarkable objective for a petrol exporting country. According to the International Energy Agency, 2015 saw the number of electric cars on the road pass the one million mark for the very first time, closing the year at 1.26 million electric vehicles.
Hopefully, initiatives such as Elbnb will encourage car users to ditch their traditional petrol-powered cars in favour of eco-friendly electric models. 2016 is on track to be the hottest year ever recorded on our planet, so it's about time we drastically cut our greenhouse gas emissions. The switch to electric and hybrid vehicles is not a magic solution, but it will certainly help.