The environmental issues facing the present world are pressing. As our impact on the environment becomes more and more apparent, incorporating environmentally friendly tendencies into our day-to-day lives becomes particularly important.
Environmentally friendly tech, or green tech, is a growing field that makes use of new scientific and technical methods that benefit the earth, and help to preserve our natural resources. Whilst these advances have the potential to have positive worldwide impact on our global ecosystem, green technologies also affect people on an individual level. By improving the way we perform basic tasks such as cooking, cleaning and home management, environmentally friendly technology can allow families and individuals alike to preserve the environment through energy efficiency and reduceharmful waste.
Some of the most well-known names in tech have embraced eco-friendlier designs for their products. Samsung created a computer monitor made of 30% recycled plastic, which also runs on less energy when not in use compared to traditional monitors. LG has a whole range of greener appliances for your home and Mercedes has a luxury car in the works that will be completely powered by hydrogen fuel cells. Small companies are getting on board too – from solar-charging stations to on-the-go pollution indicators that prioritise the environment.
In order for technology to be considered ‘green’ it must be sustainable, contribute as little waste and pollution as possible, and recycle or reuse materials where appropriate. How many of your everyday technologies fulfil this criteria? If you would like to be more eco-friendly, here are a few sustainable everyday technologies to help reduce your carbon footprint.
NEST: NEXT GENERATION THERMOSTAT
Google acquired Nest, a thermostat company, in January 2014 for $3.2 billion. Now on its 3rd generation model, the thermostat works by automatically adjusting home heat while you’re away, enabling users to save up to 20% on heating costs. It has the ability to learn your routine, building a personalised heating schedule and adjusting the temperature to suit your preferences. Of course, this gadget can also be controlled from a variety of devices that use Wi-Fi.
THE AUTOMATIC APP + ADAPTER
Automatic plugs into the diagnostic port of your car, allowing you to harness the computing power of your vehicle to improve fuel efficiency. Once active, Automatic connects your cars computing system to your phone, passing information about its subsystems – everything from the fuel tank to the engine. The device uses this data to alert you to any issues with your car, a sort of ‘preventative health’ mechanism, before the problem effects your fuel efficiency or vehicle emissions. Your driving is also judged by Automatic, which tells you when bad driving habits waste petrol. In fact, the company claims you will spend an impressive 33% less on fuel each year.
TZOA: POWERING CLEAN AIR
Putting people in touch with the environment is Tzoa'smain aim. This portable environmental sensor tracks all sorts of metrics. You could, for example, attach the device to your bag and let it measure ultra violet exposure as you embark on your morning commute to work. Or place it on your bedside table to monitor the quality of the air and humidity in your bedroom.
Perhaps Tzoa will encourage people to venture outside and map air pollution levels in their communities, and turn awareness into advocacy.
LED LIGHT BULBS
The light bulb has come a long way in the last 20 years and one of the most significant developments was the introduction of LED light bulbs. These bulbs consume up to 80% less energy than their incandescent counterparts, burn brighter and last 25 times longer. This also means fewer lightbulbs creating waste in landfills.
NEBIA: FEEL GOOD FEELING GOOD
If you’re conscious of conserving water when showering, the Nebia shower may be for you. Enjoy a long luxurious shower, with multiple nozzles that generate variable water temperatures and pressure, truly giving you a full body cleanse. All whilst remaining energy efficient and economical by only using 30% of the water you would typically use with a conventional shower.
The newest green tech seems to be aimed at the average, environmentally conscious person, making controlling our own carbon footprints something that does not seem like a distant investment only achievable by those with money.
We still have a long way to go before the tech we use sufficiently reduces the harmful impact of human activity on the earth, however, green tech innovators are using the latest environmental science and green chemistry to help lessen the gap. Many promising developments have already been made in regards to renewable energy, water purification, waste management and also in everyday consumer products, like electronics and vehicles.
Being green is no longer just a commitment to recycling, it’s well on its way to becoming a way of life. As our technological capabilities continue to expand, the future of green tech could see innovations we can’t possible fathom, as todays society attempts to tread more lightly on our earth and reduce, repair and prevent the damaging effects of our ever-growing population.