April: Host Advisory Board Spotlight

Stephanie
Community Manager
Community Manager
London, United Kingdom

April: Host Advisory Board Spotlight

Hi everyone!

 

It’s that time again - another spotlight from the Host Advisory Board and this month we’re talking to @Anna1403 in Pembrokeshire, Wales. Several of you have seen Anna around the Community Center and it’s apt that her piece comes today on Earth Day 2021, as her focus as an Advisory Board member is on Sustainability.

 

Check out the latest Resource Center article here which details what the Host Advisory Board has been doing around sustainability as well as Anna’s fascinating hosting journey.

 

Let’s use this thread to say hello to Anna and discuss sustainability! As always, please be respectful and constructive with your comments. 

 

Many thanks,

Stephanie


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48 Replies 48
Martin3766
Level 1
Australia

Fantastic @Anna1403 and all those who are doing the same thing. I've just started hosting (The Summer House with bush backyard at Bawley - Bawley Point, Australia) and I'm very keen to see all these great sustainability ideas. Our place is already somewhat off-grid, with seep system sewer (off-grid absorption) and all water via roof harvest to tank.

 

We have furnished the house with recycled furniture and use a wonderfully sustainable toilet paper by "who gives a crap". 

 

We plant from a list of original native plants, since we are in a pristine area and seriously owe it to the land and the original inhabitants of the Murramarang Aboriginal Area.

 

Next will be solar, a battery and tips on local sustainability.

 

Cheers Martin & MaryEllen

Helen2361
Level 2
Epping, Australia

Hi Anna, wow this is amazing and so inspirational.

My husband and I are just beginning our hosting adventure with a little quaint log cabin in our 3 acre field - something we have dreamed of doing for a long time. Built with our fair hands.. ( there has definitely been some blood, sweat and tears)!

I have always been an ambassador for sustainable living and one of my projects at the moment is trying to grow my own British cut flowers to reduce our carbon footprint with imported flowers.... it’s a working progress. 
I am keen to continue learning how to live a more sustainable life and certainly inject that in our little cabin for our guest to enjoy.

looking forward to joining in on this journey with you and fellow Airbnb hosts

Helen. 

James2696
Level 2
Jacksboro, TX

We started building a new lake and 35-person lodge on the lake 5 years ago with the objective of sustainability and energy use a big factor. We designed the pitch and direction of our lodge roof to maximize the production of our solar panels and added a battery system to allow emergency power in case of power outage plus reverse feed back into the grid to save on power consumption. The lodge is basically a steel and concrete storm shelter with a heavily insulated wall and roof. We collect water from the roof and it goes to an underground water storage tank as well as our lake. Building durable, low maintenance facilities has really paid off over the last four years. Steel, concrete, solar panels, batteries etc are all made from  fossil fuels so its the perfect blend of using our natural resources combined with the sun’s powerful contribution. We are placing solar panels on our new cabins to feed back into the grid and reduce our electrical bill. At the same time, our new secluded campgrounds and campsites are all designed to enhance and support our wildlife population which is growing daily. We have found ways to eliminate habitat destruction and improve the health of our bird, bee, deer, turkey, bobcat, armadillo, possum, raccoon, coyote population and our flower, tree and vegetation so that our guests can enjoy mother nature in a balanced ranch retreat environment.

Rhonda46
Level 3
San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

A checkbox is needed for Environmental Friendly Products. For many years we have provided Wool Dryer Balls, Mineral Balls (washing machine), reusable Swedish Dishcloths, fabric shopping bags, mesh vege/fruit bags and before COVID, only ecological cleaning products. It is easy to change over to environmentally friendly products!

Catherine577
Level 3
Memphis, TN

I've had my home "Green" since day 1 because I've been an environmentalist for years. 

I have lots of palm oil free, sustainability-produced supplies that I use ( Cleancult is one), and other resources for being eco-friendly. My yard service says their fertilizers are animal-friendly, but that's my next project. 

A smart thermostat is required. The one I use, Ecobee, is great for managing the carbon footprint. I can manage everything remotely, and our lights are on smart switches as is the porch light which can be turned off/on remotely. 

I use a wall dispenser for shampoo, etc., biodegradable bags...Green Paper Products has all eco-friendly, biodegradable and compostable cutlery , paper towels, etc. The list goes on.

I don't provide bottled water, Keurig pods nor those small, Hotel-sized, plastic container toiletries.

I've been working on this for quite a while. The UK does very well with eco-friendly products. 

*"Airbnb should join the Tourism Declares a Climate Emergency group that I've also joined.

I'll include their "About Us" statement. If Airbnb is serious about fighting Climate change, and encouraging Hosts to join this initiative then Airbnb needs to join. It's free, by the way, and geared toward the Tourism industry:

Tourism Declares supports tourism businesses, organisations and individuals in declaring a climate emergency and taking action to reduce their carbon emissions. 

Marian133
Level 2
Mendocino, CA

Greetings all! I already have a sustainable space...a fragrance free ("Share The Air"bnb), pesticide and herbicide free... but wish Airbnb would support us making these commitments with discounts on green cleaning and household supplies, disinfectants, signage and badges that support and highlight our commitments to this cause. I have reached out before with no response...and hope we can create a real partnership or cooperative with Airbnb on this. Thank you!

Anna1403
Host Advisory Board Member
Newgale, United Kingdom

@Marian133 this is such an excellent point and a great idea about discounts on green cleaning etc! This is only the beginning and things are definitely moving in the right direction 💚

Jan-and-Mike0
Level 2
Bellvue, CO

Love this! As travelers we know the carbon footprint we can leave is huge. We try to minimize the impact on our Northern Colorado community as much as we can by using biodegradable soaps and cleaners, providing bar soap rather as an option to liquid soap, and having the whole home powered by solar through our local rural electric association.  In the kitchen we have reusable shopping bags on hand, extra towels and rags to reduce paper towel use,refillable growlers for visits to the local breweries, filtered water to minimize plastic bottles, and lots of insulated coffee cups to take that cup of joe to go! Additionally, we are in the process of replacing much of the grass in some areas with bee friendly clover, planted extensive pollinator gardens and never use herbicides or pesticides.  We are trying to do our part and are happy to know Airbnb will be supporting hosts with sustainability!

Anna1403
Host Advisory Board Member
Newgale, United Kingdom

@Jan-and-Mike0 so wonderful to hear what you are doing in Colorado (an incredible place I have to add!!) Your rural electric association sounds just brilliant - we are too trying to set you a community owned renewable energy project here using predominately wave power. And your point about the grass is wonderful too - we have ‘no mow May’ here in the U.K. now - the idea is to leave your lawn for the whole month and let the wild flowers grow to help the wildlife! 

Thank you for the introduction. This is such a lovely reminder of the heart and soul of Airbnb and why I loved my first experience with the platform when I traveled to Paris. I hope Airbnb is listening to host representatives like you on what it will take for us to get back to our roots. ❤️

Anna1403
Host Advisory Board Member
Newgale, United Kingdom

Awww thank you so much @Christine615 for such lovely words - I too also feel that about the platform and hearing you reflect that also gives me the same hope! So thank you so much ❤️ 

Clara116
Level 10
Pensacola, FL

@Anna1403Really nice introduction and love that you raise/have chickens. So do you know of water glassing eggs? If not, check it out on Youtube - rather amazing way that folks preserved/stored fresh eggs when there was no refrigeration.....my understanding is you can keep them fresh for about 1-2 yrs. in this water mixture. 

My husband is an organic gardener as hobby....now retired...lifestyle and wonderful new way of living. 

I'm so curious what all you are able to grow in the UK....we are in Florida and we have a long and hot growing season mostly. 

Wishing you the best in all you do.

Blessings, Clara

Anna1403
Host Advisory Board Member
Newgale, United Kingdom

Thank you so much @Clara116 for taking the time to comment - yes! I have heard of water glassing - here in the UK pickled eggs are the most popular way to preserve eggs I would say! Not that I have had much chance to experiment - with all of my family and both cottages full of guests there aren't many spare usually!! They are very yummy! And yes, we are distinctly less warm and humid than Florida for sure but we have quite a microclimate here in Pembrokeshire and we very very rarely ever get frost or snow - so I can grow all year with no issues in my greenhouse particularly! I have a polytunnel going up this weekend after my husband and i got all the landscaping ready - I am excited to get some rather exotic tomato seedlings going!!

Laurelle3
Level 10
Huskisson, Australia

@Clara116  and @Anna1403 I was going to suggest or ask if they were pickled eggs. In the late 1960's early 1970's there was a large contigent of Australian sailors training to be Submariners in the UK and they enjoyed eating them after the pub visit. Many tales are still told today about the pickled eggs.

Anna, I am glad you have taken on this subject of sustainability which I try to apply to my life. I think by living and grown up on farms, by the beach, in the bush (forests) and cities you really know about the nature and nurture.

However, it is interesting how people around the world are trying to make a change to our environment from a small amount around their homes, communities to larger amounts, through councils, co-operations and a small part from governments (more talk than actions).

My enjoyment is listening and seeing bird life and animals found in our local area. I had wriiten on @Omar0 page when he introduced himself and I mentioned that I have a small worm farm as part of my sustainability for our cottage. 

My garden is my other interest which I put the worm castings and juice on to enrich the soil in my garden. Lastly I found a nest under the ferns in the garden, on my first day of bird watching there was no eggs but a little bit of grey fluff, next day there was 2 liitle bits of movement.

On the third day there were 3 pairs of little eyes looking out. The mother bird came chirping as a decoy, identified after checking bird book as a Yellow Breasted Robin. I didn't check the nest for a couple of days and the nest was empty. Checking the book it says they fall out of the nest on the 13th day get there wings and fly off, hence missing there escape.

The Yellow a Robin has returned to the garden maybe another nest. I have shown some of the children guests the old nest and tell them the story of find and watching the nest, even the photo of the fluff in the nest.

Anna I am looking forward to this page with interest and ther hosts ideas, suggestions with a positive outlook to our small contribution with sustainability.

Clara116
Level 10
Pensacola, FL

@Laurelle3 thanks for your lovely interesting post about the Yellow Breasted Robins. I'll bet the children are eager to search and post watch for possible any baby birds but even better would be showing them your Worms! Kids love worms, my husband, organic gardener/composter/worm daddy has them and processes much Black Gold for our organic garden and the community garden in our downtown area. 

My small part is growing loofahs/luffa sponges  in the garden and sharing those with family/friends and many guests.....also seeds. and I do make some soap with loofah sponge inside, perfect for these days of super hand washing. 

all the best to you and yours,

Clara

Laurelle3
Level 10
Huskisson, Australia

@Clara116 thanks for the mention of loofas, I had to look up on the internet could they be grown in my community and yes they can. Our local garden show tells you how to grow and prepare them. They also showed how to add soap which would make a gift for guests and friends for christmas. I have missed the planting season for this year. Great idea thank you

Clara116
Level 10
Pensacola, FL

Yes @Laurelle3 they demand a great amount of sunshine but are a delight to grow, harvest and give away and even sell. You'll love growing them I promise. Just not close to other veggies, as they will choke them out and take over.....I use large containers and a trellis to grow mine and have experimented with many methods.

Enjoy and happy planting

Anna1403
Host Advisory Board Member
Newgale, United Kingdom

@Laurelle3 what a wonderful story! Thank you so much for sharing! Exactly capturing how I also live my life now - taking the time to stop and watch nature, it is utterly heartwarming and just beautiful! And yes, pickled eggs are often found famously on the bars of British pubs to enjoy with a pint and a cob! (a type of sandwich!)

Dale711
Level 10
Paris, France

Hi @Laurelle3 

It was a pleasure to hear your humorous stories.

You’re amazing 👏👏👏      

Clara116
Level 10
Pensacola, FL

@Anna1403 how terrific hearing back from you!  I am delighted to talk garden, veggies, eggs and anything with food preservation. We too love pickled eggs....I am so envious of your polytunnel......our tomatoes are busting with growth and so in just a few weeks there will be lots of canning happening around here.  I will experiment even more this year with more salsa recipes and different tomato possibilities.

Happy growing & all good things!

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