Older forms of technology may get blamed for contributing to pollution and global warming, but there are plenty of recent innovations that may counter those effects. If you want to make Earth a healthier planet, consider these four ways technology is helping the world be more green.
Fossil fuels have made it easier for people to travel, grow food, and generate electricity. Unfortunately, they have also contributed significant amounts of pollution. For instance, power plants in the U.S. that make electricity from fossil fuels are responsible for:
- 70 percent of the country’s sulfur dioxide emissions
- 40 percent of carbon dioxide emissions
- 13 percent of nitrogen oxide emissions
These emissions damage the ozone layer, worsen global warming, and contribute to health problems like asthma.
Solar panels practically eliminate these emissions by making fossil fuels unnecessary. Instead of burning oil, coal, or natural gas, both utility companies and individuals can generate electricity by harnessing the sun’s energy.
Solar panel technology keeps getting more efficient while the prices keep falling. Some experts believe that solar power is the best solution to global warming. With the right level of commitment, people could even use solar panels to reverse problems created by using fossil fuels.
Green Smartphone Apps
If you’re looking for a cheaper, more personal way to help the world be more green, just turn to your mobile device. Smartphones such as the iPhone 6s, with its large Retina display, fast A9 chip, and the latest iOS 9, can give you access to hundreds of apps that will help you make smarter choices that benefit the environment.
An app like the electricity meter reader WattBuddy lets you track your electricity use so you can find ways to save energy.
The Green Product Buying Guide makes it easier for you to purchase products from responsible companies that cater to the needs of people concerned about the environment.
You can even use the Commute Greener app to reduce your daily commute’s carbon footprint.
These are all good options for making your lifestyle greener. Plus, developers keep making more apps to meet the needs of people with diverse lifestyles and concerns. As long as you have the right mobile device, you can access a growing number of green apps.
Cars and trucks contribute about 24 pounds of global warming gases to the atmosphere for every gallon of gas they use. That makes them one of the top sources of pollution in the United States. Electric cars, however, do not create any emissions. That makes them a better option that will help protect the world’s environment from global warming and pollution.
The energy source used to power an electric car matters quite a lot. Ideally, solar power will become ubiquitous, making it possible for commuters to break all connections to fossil fuels. Just because that hasn’t happened yet doesn’t mean that electric cars are useless. Even if you get electricity from a power plant that burns fossil fuels, you can still reduce emissions by choosing an electric car.
Home automation was once so expensive that only wealthy families could afford it. The prices have come down so much in recent years that practically all homeowners can afford basic devices. Even something as simple as adding a Nest thermostat could help lower energy use by up to 30 percent. Similar smart devices can reduce the energy needed for everything from lighting to appliances.
The most sophisticated home automation tools are still a little expensive, but the prices are falling quickly and the technology is getting better by the year. Now, you can pick up automation devices at your local hardware store.
Eventually, it will become common to find homes where appliances, lighting and temperature control are all connected to central systems that adjust energy use according to personal preference and time of day. These systems could be used with either solar panels or conventional power, but either way, every bit helps when it comes to protecting the planet’s future.
These four pieces of technology could help the world be more green, but they can only work if more people start using them.
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