Australian ridesharing is about to become more eco-friendly as Shebah, the all-women rideshare service, celebrated International Women’s Day by unveiling its new carbon offset program, the first of its kind in the country.
Shebah is working with Tasman Environmental Markets (TEM), Australia’s largest carbon offset provider, to balance trip emissions by contributing to environmental projects in Australia and around the world.
By September 2020, Shebah passengers will be able to opt-in on the app to include a small automatic fee on every trip that reflects the environmental cost and goes directly to a green project. In addition, Shebah will match each contribution dollar for dollar.
“This announcement is just another exciting first for our industry that gives back to our community and ensures we’re doing what we can to reduce our environmental footprint,” Shebah chief executive officer George McEnroe said.
Each trip cost will be calculated by tracking CO? emissions with BlueHalo technology, provided by TEM. The software can then pair offset costs directly to a project for maximum benefit.
Contributions will go to a variety of verified initiatives including Indigenous fire management programs in the Northern Territory, strengthening renewable energy in India and protecting rainforests in Peru.
TEM CEO Peter Castellas believes that passengers will join as a way to both reduce their carbon footprint and give directly to those most vulnerable.
Ridesharing has expanded in Australia into a $6 billion industry, over the past few years.
Of the six companies available in the country, Uber is the overwhelming choice for most commuters and still growing. A Roy Morgan study found that 4.3 million Australians aged 14 and older travelled with Uber, nearly double the amount in 2016.
Shebah operates as a women-only rideshare experience, providing a safe alternative for women and young children. Shebah drivers are available in all major Australian cities.