4 Simple Apps to Help You Become More Environmentally Friendly

We only have one planet, and it’s all of our responsibility to ensure that we do our part to keep it healthy. Fortunately, these apps can help you save the world, one tap at a time.

Climate change poses a serious threat to the future of the planet. Unfortunately, human beings are the biggest contributor to climate change due to the amount of greenhouse gases we pump into the atmosphere. While climate change is a huge problem, everyone can do their part to help reduce their own emissions. Oroeco (Android, iOS) is an app that can help you identify the contributors of your own carbon footprint.

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Oroeco tracks your impact on the climate by automatically putting a carbon value on everything you buy. This includes what you eat, how you get around, and the energy you use. This allows users to easily see which decisions are bigger than others. In addition, users can see how they compare with others, using scientific data from UC Berkeley’s CoolClimate research group. Oroeco offers personalized tips on how to reduce your impact on the environment.

When it comes to being environmentally conscious, one of the simplest ways to do your part is to reduce your waste whenever possible. Garbage generated by humans is filling up landfills and finding it’s way into oceans and other places it doesn’t belong. Of course, we can’t stop generating trash altogether. However, we can aim to recycle more of our waste.

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Unfortunately, it can be difficult to determine what is recyclable and what isn’t. Furthermore, only certain items may be collected for recycling by your local government. For example, your plastic milk jug may be picked up, but what about your electronic waste like old phones and computers? The sad reality is that most folks would probably just dump it in the trash, which isn’t great for the environment. Luckily, RecycleNation (Android, iOS) is a search engine for recycling stations near you. Users can search by selecting a recyclable material category (plastic, electronics, etc.), or simply by location.

It should come as no surprise that cars are one of the biggest contributors to global warming. Fossil fuel-burning vehicles create approximately twenty pounds of carbon dioxide when they consume just a single gallon of gasoline. It is estimated that the average car pumps about six tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere every single year. Unfortunately, for many of us a car is a necessity we simply can’t live without.

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Waze is known for their GPS navigation; however, they also offer a real-time ride-sharing solution. Waze Carpool (Android, iOS) connects you with other users who are going your way and allows you to request rides. Like other ride-sharing apps, Waze operates on a user review rating system; however, the drivers are not employed by Waze. Instead, they are everyday people like friends, neighbors and coworkers. This enables users to connect with others in their community, all the while saving money and reducing their carbon dioxide emissions.

If the idea of changing your habits seems like a deal-breaker,  but you still want to help the environment, you’re in luck. Do you search for stuff on the Internet? With Ecosia (Android, iOS) you can do your part by plugging stuff into a search engine, something virtually everyone does on a daily basis.

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Ecosia is a search engine that shows advertisements next to its search results. 80% of the revenue generated through these ads is donated to various non-profit conservationist organizations. The main focus of Ecosia’s charitable donations go towards reforestation efforts around the world. Since December 2009, Ecosia has estimated that over 38 million trees have been planted thanks to their users. In addition, Ecosia prides itself on being a carbon-neutral company and engages in full financial transparency.

“Going Green” is certainly appealing; however, many people don’t know where to start. Luckily, JouleBug (Android, iOS) can point you in the right direction. JouleBug shows users simple things that they can change in their daily lives that help them attain a more sustainable lifestyle. The tips and advice that JouleBug offers are bundled with easy-to-understand impact stats, how-to videos, and other helpful links.

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In order to encourage change, JouleBug “gamifies” the process of going green. Users track their impact and collect badges and trophies for actions they undertake in the real world. In addition, users can engage in challenges to earn points and achievements that they can compare with other JouleBug users.

Which apps help you go green? Let us know in the comments!

One comment

  1. I noticed that all the apps you mentioned are for smartphones. Are you assuming that everybody has a smartphone? Or that only smartphone owners care about the environment?

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