Living a sustainable lifestyle is great for the planet, but it requires a bit of creativity. You may have to switch to new habits you might not have considered before. Researching your environmental footprint can feel exhausting and time-consuming, but technology is here to help. These are the top green living apps to reduce your carbon footprint and make sustainable living feel effortless.
Throwing out junk mail sends so much paper waste to your local landfill. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) found that paper waste was the largest component of solid waste in 2018, adding up to 67.4 million tons in a single year. PaperKarma takes a picture of your junk mail and automatically unsubscribes you from receiving more, so you can automatically cut down on your paper footprint.
Most people who want to go green know that they should skip single-use plastic water bottles. Plastic breaks down into pollutants that ruin the local environment, but it’s challenging to know if you’ll be able to refill your water bottle while you’re out in town. Tap connects you with a map of refill stations, along with places that sell sparkling, filtered, and flavored water.
When your cleaning products swirl down your plumbing, they leak into nearby waterways and create new pollution. You don’t need to memorize complicated ingredient lists to find eco-friendly alternatives to sprays and scrubs. You can use GoodGuide to look up a cleaning product or any other item you’d like to buy and see if it has a high rating for being great for the planet.
Cutting down on electricity usage is often the first step people take to go green. JouleBug awards point every time you reduce your usage and even connects you with friends who are doing the same thing.
While you’re fighting for first place and changing old habits, look for direct ways to improve your long-term energy consumption. You could check your HVAC unit to see if your current model is energy efficient. Units receive an ENERGY STAR certification if they meet a 14.5 SEER rating, but if yours has less than that, it doesn’t operate with sustainability in mind.
It’s always wise to look for new ways to use less electricity. Whether you decide to upgrade household appliances or switch lightbulb models, Joulebug rewards every effort to reinforce better habits.
The next time you feel like ordering a burger, opt for a vegan meal instead. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) found that the livestock sector generates 18% of global greenhouse gas emissions by raising and processing animals.
You may think you can’t switch to a vegan lifestyle because the food is hard to find, but HappyCow can help with that. It provides an updated list of vegan restaurants in your area so you never have to waste time searching for an environmentally friendly meal.
You want to use green living apps to reduce your carbon footprint, but how do you define that footprint? It can seem like a vague number that doesn’t make sense. Oroeco can translate the number for you. It assigns CO2 output amounts for every daily activity so you know exactly how each action affects the environment. You’ll fine-tune your lifestyle without any guessing involved.
Natural resources like water and soil nutrients go into every meal and snack. When people waste that food, it wastes the resources that helped create it. If you don’t need food in your pantry or fridge, use Olio to connect with neighbors who want it. The app collects photos of surplus food so everyone can find what they need without sending more waste to landfills.
Experts at the United Nations Climate Change secretariat estimate that the textile sector will rise by over 60% by 2030 from its current position of creating 1.2 billion tons of CO2 annually. Buying fast fashion pieces and throwing them away when a few weeks or months pass adds to landfill waste. People who use ThredUp can buy used clothing from major retailers at a direct-to-consumer price. It’s digital thrifting, but you’ll find the latest styles. Browse the premium and designer pieces to discover the next greatest addition to your wardrobe without funding an industry that hurts the planet.
Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
Technology makes eco-friendly lifestyles so much easier to manage. Use some of the top green living apps to reduce your carbon footprint and find new ways to embrace sustainability. Finding vegan food, energy-efficient appliances, and used clothes are just a few ways to get started on a green, effortless lifestyle.
Jane is the founder and editor-in-chief of Environment.co where she covers topics in green technology, energy, and environmental sustainability.