Living a greener life is an aspiration many of us share these days. And there are plenty of small steps we can all take to be greener that feel pretty easy, like recycling, or bringing your own mug when you go for your daily Starbucks fill. But what if you want to do more? How do you get started on those next steps? These six mobile apps provide easy and effective ways for you to green up your life.
- Dirty Dozen – The Environmental Working Group’s mission is to use the power of public information to protect public health and the environment. Along those lines, they’ve developed a shopper’s guide called The Dirty Dozen which is updated annually and provides a snapshot of conventionally grown foods with the most and least pesticide residues. By downloading this app you will always have the most recent list in your pocket to help lower your pesticide intake.
- JouleBug – Turn being green into a game with this app that rewards your behavior with points and pins and allows you to compete with others on your quest to a greener life. It’s filled with tips and information that you can use to save energy and reduce waste in every day. If the game aspect of this app doesn’t do it for you, maybe the money savings will. The app makers claim you can save an average of $200/year by following the advice in the app.
- iRecycle – It’s easy to recycle your #1 and #2 plastics in most places, but what if you want to recycle your alkaline batteries or cell phone? The iRecycle app has over 1,500,000 ways to recycle over 350 materials and uses your current location to recommend recycling solutions in your area. Items are clearly categorized and the user interface is very well laid out, making recycling even the most worrisome items a breeze. iRecycle is available on iPhone and Android phones.
- Seafood Watch – I am a sucker for fresh seafood, but for the same reason I choose to eat organic meat and produce whenever possible, I also want to be sure I’m eating the most sustainably produced fish. The Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch program app provides easy decision making by sorting seafood into 3 categories: Best Choice, Good Alternative, and Avoid. It’s all about identifying sustainable and healthy fishing and farming sources. As a bonus, it also gives you a map of the best seafood stores and restaurants serving up fresh, sustainable seafood in your area.
- PaperKarma – Junk mail is not only annoying, but it’s also a huge waste of paper and resources. PaperKarma allows you to stop the mailbox madness by taking a picture of your junk mail in the app and tapping unsubscribe. The app does all the work and gets your name off the list!
- GoodGuide – When you’re walking the aisles of the grocery store it can be difficult to know what your shopping dollars are supporting. The GoodGuide app utilizes the barcode scanner in your phone to find out whether the products you’re adding to your cart are safe, healthy, green, and socially responsible. They’ve rated more than 170,000 U.S. products and will deliver an overall score for each product when you scan it, allowing you to shop with confidence.
Are there any apps that you use to be greener in your daily life that I didn’t mention here? Let us know in the comments below!