The relationship between humans and the internet is a complicated one. On one hand, smartphones and social media are a constant source of distraction. They often stop us from actually interacting with the world around us and have lead to some pretty crappy things like cyber bullying and data hacking.
At the same time, the world would be a very different place without modern technology. Not only has it created many job opportunities, it’s also given rise to positive things like charity crowd-sourcing websites. Oh, and awesome online destinations like Sporteluxe! Another (slightly ironic) way that manmade technology has changed the world for the better is through the emergence of green living apps.
These apps make it that little bit easier for us to live ethical, sustainable lives and do our bit for the environment. Better yet, they actually make it fun! Being Earth Month, we say there’s no better time to download them. Here are some of our favourites:
1. Good On You
This app is perfect for anyone who wants to shop for sustainable fashion but isn’t sure where to start. It’s a directory of ethical fashion across Australia, New Zealand, and the US. Not only does it give you sustainability ratings on more than 1200 clothing and accessory labels, they’re also set to roll out a beauty and personal section this year, too. We also love the fact that it sends you updates when your favourite brands are having a sale — so it’s good to your wallet and the environment!
So, you really want to stick to sustainable living but need an extra kick in the butt? Why not make a game out of it? That’s exactly what JouleBug does by allowing you to earn points by competing with your friends, family, and colleagues in a series of environmentally-friendly challenges. If that’s not motivation enough, it also links up to your utility account and gives you updates of when you’ve saved cash by making sustainable choices!
3. Recycle Smart
We’ve all had that moment when we’ve been genuinely puzzled about whether something (whether it’s batteries or a coffee cup) could go in the recycling bin or not. This app is the quickest and most efficient solution to those dilemmas! Developed in collaboration with Planet Ark, it’s Australia’s most comprehensive recycling app. Not only does it have a handy search function so you can check the correct way to dispose of things, it’ll also remind you to put the bins out! If you’ve ever wanted to be one of those people who are super smug about their recycling habits, download this app, pronto.
They say how you start your morning sets the tone for your entire day. So, what if instead of your blaring alarm, you had an app that woke you up with an inspiring song, meditation or yoga sequence? That’s exactly what the TODAY app does, before setting you a challenge to make positive, sustainable choices based on your own goals. Whether you want to remember to recycle or reduce your fuel usage, TODAY shows you how one small change each day can make a big difference. You can also build teams with the people around you to take on challenges together. The app has been crowdfunded on StartSomeGood and is set to be released to released this July.
Click here to find out more.
5. Cruelty Free
Created by Australian non-profit Choose Cruelty Free (CCF), this app is a comprehensive directory of products that aren’t tested on animals. It’s super easy to navigate and covers pretty much every category you could think of, from gardening products to pet food. There’s also the option to filter by products that are 100% vegan.
6. Love Your Leftovers
Australians throw out over $8 billion in edible food each year. Scary, right? Not only are we throwing our own hard-earned cash down the drain, it’s also a waste of the fuel and resources required to get the food onto your plate. This app helps you reduce your carbon footprint by reducing food wastage. You simply enter in what ingredients you’ve got leftover and it suggests some delicious recipes you can whip up with them!
7. Energy Rating
When we’re shopping for new household appliances, most of us go off the price on the sticker. But what many of us fail to look at is the second price tag. This is the energy label sticker — which indicates how much energy the appliance uses. Not only does this affect your contribution towards greenhouse gas emissions, it could also be the reason your electricity bill is sky-high! This handy app makes it super easy to compare power costs and decode those labels. It even tells you the annual running cost of the product you’re looking at!