Ever heard the phrase ‘there’s an app for that’?
Well, it’s true! Within the realms of possibility, apps exist to help you do almost anything, or do anything with a lot less effort. A United Nations study found that more people have mobile devices than toilets, and 6 out of the 7 billion people on Earth are connected. We look at some of the free apps out there that can help you have a greener impact!
GoodGuide is a fantastic app, supplying rates for products and businesses to help potential consumers review their social, environmental and health attributes. The performance of each product is a valuable assessment and will certainly sway more conscious consumers. The long term reality is that the growth of such an app would force or encourage products and businesses to improve their products through research and development.
The database contains over 170,000 items, from food to cosmetics. The barcode scanner allows you to gain more information about a registered product while you are out and about.
Water Efficiency Magazine created this nifty little app to help teach people about their ‘water footprint’ and give them a way to measure their effect. The end goal is to reduce water consumption across four categories: food, drinks, products and household items. We think that this must relate to the production values, as there’s nothing wrong with drinking a glass of water. The calculator measures several different things and allows the app user to compare different items for their ‘water footprint’.
Conference Co2 calculator
Irish business site ‘Meet in Ireland’ built this brilliant app to work out the carbon footprint of going to a conference. The app uses road, rail, air and sea to work out how many kilos of Carbon Dioxide have been emitted into the atmosphere for the benefit of your travel. One example states: ‘a person travelling from San Francisco to Dublin and back in a business class seat will chalk up 4237.28kgs. This costs €26.64 to ‘carbon neutralise’
The app goes one step further, and it’s this one step that puts them on our list as an app to make you greener. Meet in Ireland sell carbon offsetting through paypal, and 10% of this goes to Haven, and Irish NGO building homes in Haiti.
Watch the mission statement!
*I actually use this app to keep up to date with environmental issues
When you’re sat on Twitter, thousands of tweets fly down your feed each day, and it’s understandable that you’ll miss most of them. If you’re Green like we are, then you might see all different environmental issues – recycling, ocean pollution, deforestation and fracking, just to name a tiny few. With #Climate, a responsible team sifts through and separates the issues into a more coherent way of understanding and spreading awareness for them. Through a selection process upon sign up, you only choose the topics you care more about, and are then given a chance to tweet them, or post them to Facebook. It’s a mixture of awareness and education, and is truly brilliant.
Here are the topics I was given this morning.(see right)
Skeptical Science is based on an Australian blog of the same name, which provides various forms of information and education that put climate change skeptics in their place. The free app offers arguments and counter arguments that give greenies and anti-greenies a better balanced idea of the topic.
Pollution gives you instant access to the air pollution of the place that you are. It draws realtime data from a variety of sources to provide you an up to date measurement of the air quality. Local pollutant facilities are listed, and there is bounteous information about the polluting chemicals themselves. Here are some bullet points showing what is on offer:
• Realtime air quality (1380 cities worldwide)
• Interactive map, with visualization of pollution sources
• Geolocation button to get to your information
• Detailed list of nearby pollutant facilities, with discharges details and volumes
• Research on a city, a region (global search)
• Summary pages on pollutants and environmental norms, as well as potential risks regarding your health
• Frequent database updates, with various pollution databases compilation
• Access to detailed pollution sources in Europe and USA
• Global coverage regarding base stations (use of OpenCellID project data)
I actually found out about Hive from my Dad. I’m not a ‘responsible bill payer’, so I’ve never had to consider controlling the central heating and hot water. If I was, I wouldn’t know where to start if you put a boiler in front of me. It is claimed that the mobile app, which controls your heating and hot water, can save upto £150 a year on energy bills, and can provide frost protection and temperature alerts to maintain a longer life.