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Community Carsharing makes a debut in Melbourne

Posted in Movements by RideEco on December 5th, 2012

Peer-to-peer carsharing is an international movement making huge strides in reducing carbon emissions. It has been shown to increase public transport usage and decrease car ownership, leading to reduced road congestion and CO2 emissions.  It’s a concept that has finally made its way to Melbourne, with the launch of locally-run, RideEco.

RideEco is a platform that allows car owners to safely rent their cars to vetted members of their community, all by using a smart phone app. Recent research from RideEco revealed it’s a concept Melbournian’s would get on board – with 63% of respondents saying they would lend their car to a stranger if it meant benefits for the environment.

Carsharing has huge potential for reducing CO2 emissions and road congestion in Melbourne. Similar programs run internationally have been shown to reduce the number of cars on the road by nine to 13 cars for each car shared.  This happens as members substitute car ownership for carsharing, borrowing a car in their neighbourhood when they really need one, and using more public transport on days they don’t.

An average car, driving 15,000kms per year, produces around three tonnes of CO2. So if RideEco can reduce nine cars on the road for every car that joins the programme, it would save 27 tonnes of CO2 emissions per car shared.

In Australia a small car costs around $7000 a year to run, but according to recent RideEco research most cars in Melbourne are used for only 11 hours a week. On top of the environmental benefits, carsharing helps owners recoup some of these costs while their cars sit idle and gives those who don’t own a car an economical way to get around.

To create a more sustainable transport option for Melbournian’s, the company’s goal is to reach a critical mass so that in the future anyone can walk down the street in their neighbourhood and access a car to borrow on a short-term basis.

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