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Best Apps for Monitoring and Reducing Your Carbon Footprint

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For the past decade, the phrase “carbon footprint” has worked its way into the nation’s vocabulary. More people know that it relates to environmental impact, but what does it mean, exactly?

The two main factors that should be considered are carbon dioxide and methane emissions of a population (or person), a system or an activity, according to a generally accepted definition written by Laurence A. Wright, Simon Kemp and Ian Williams in 2011.

“This should allow the carbon footprint to become a cost-effective, practical and repeatable metric that can be adopted by all types of organizations across the globe as a ‘baseline’ indicator,” the trio wrote in the Carbon Management journal.

These greenhouse gases can occur through a variety of means, including transport, land clearance and the production and consumption of food.

Carbon Footprint Apps

In recent years, apps have been developed so you can manage you carbon footprint, making it as small as possible. Some of the better and more interesting carbon footprint apps are listed below, culled from lists provided by

Conference CO2 Calculator. This app from Tourism Ireland, which can be used on the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad, allows you to calculate the carbon costs of flying from your location to an international conference. If you are planning a conference, it allows you to find the location for the meeting that has the less environmental impact, depending on the location of the participants.

Zero Carbon. This app for the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad not only allows you to measure your carbon footprint but also gives you tips on how you can reduce it.

Go Green. Every time you use this app – which can be used on the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch – you get a new green tip on how to be more eco-friendly. The more green tips you collect, the higher your green status.

CarbonTrack. This app is specially designed to track your business-related carbon emissions, from travel to electronic equipment use. It is designed to help business leaders track and reduce carbon emissions throughout the entire supply chain, from production to delivery.

The Extra Mile. This carbon footprint app allows you to estimate the carbon emissions for the trip you are planning, including emissions from your car and how you can save through carpooling.

Avego. Speaking of carpooling, this app allows you to find people in your area who are driving the same way and call or message the driver to pick you up. It then calculates your payment to the driver, basically your percentage of the fuel costs. You have to sign up with the Avego community to be seen in the system.

GoodGuide. This app allows you to use the barcode scanner on your smartphone to determine what is a green product or whether products have been deemed safe, green and socially responsible by GoodGuide. The company has rated more than 170,000 products.

PaperKarma. When you get junk mail, take a picture of it with your smartphone. Then send it through the PaperKarma app, which will automatically delete you from the junk mailing list. Instant carbon footprint reduction.


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