Here’s the argument: If you’re not paying attention to climate-change science and what it’s trying to tell us about global warming, you’ve got your head planted squarely in the sand. Paying attention, however, doesn’t mean you’re automatically aware of how to personally help make a brighter future.
To do that, you might need an assist.
Enacting positive climate policies on the scale of your household, vehicle, and the things you do on a daily basis — that means understanding everyday actions on a level that many of us haven’t had to consider before.
Metrics can help. New digital tools are making it easier than ever for us to arrest environmentally unfriendly habits and replace them with better, greener moves.
The gamification of lowering your carbon footprint has arrived. Oroeco tracks what you buy, consume and do, and then crunches that data with the help of UC Berkeley to show the environmental impacts of your decisions — and how you measure up against participating friends and neighbors. Oroeco’s designers refer to their gamified service as a “dashboard for life.” At the very least, it’s a fun way to do good for the planet and compete for rewards.
2. MathTappers: Carbon Choices (iOS)
Since almost everything we do can create environmental change, visualizing the impact of the way we live is key to living greener. In a mobile way, Carbon Choices allows you track everything from showers to menus to entertainment, and then estimate the carbon load your lifestyle creates across a year.
Looking to light your home but keep it green? With this shopping aid, you can compare bulbs that fit your fixtures, see their relative environmental repercussions, and then click through to buy the ones you want.
As you book your next flight, use this app from the International Civil Aviation Organization to estimate what portion of CO2 emissions your ticket represents.
If it’s business you’re up to, the carbon footprint of your next conference session can expand quickly as numerous attendees travel to a single location and back. With this app, you get to see that effect in advance — entering origin and destination data for all participants, and then receiving a menu of venue choices graded by CO2 impact.
The next time you’re at a dinner party and a climate-change denier creates a ruckus, this app has you covered. Pick the statement that represents a given argument against global warming and Skeptical Science tells you whether it’s based on anything verifiable.
7. Images of Change (iOS)
Perhaps a bit of perspective helps as well. NASA provides it with this curated collection of photos for the iPad from its Global Climate Change website. Each new image is paired with an earlier shot of that same spot on the planet, showing how the face of the Earth is already undergoing visible transformation — shrinking glaciers, flooding rivers, wildfires, and the like.
At this point, you’re on the way to making the kind change we all need to see.
Adding these apps to your daily routine, you’re quantifying your footprint in new ways, and arming yourself with credible info — all toward lightening the load you create when it comes to a planet that’s very much tired of being stepped on.
This article was previously published on Mashable