Here at Chasing Green, we're constantly on the lookout for ways our readers can seamlessly integrate green behavior and practices into their everyday lifestyles. Smartphones provide immediate access to limitless sources of information; for that reason and many more, they have rapidly become indespensable to people on-the-go.
These gadgets and their apps also offer incredibly handy ways for us to live green: helping with transportation and shopping, even carbon footprint monitoring and home energy management. There are plenty of apps available for eco-friendly living, but we've compiled a list of just some of our favorites.
ECO-FRIENDLY TRANSPORTATION APPS
MyBikeInfo | $0.99
A tool that keeps track of the measurements and components on each of your bicycles: invaluable for cyclists who disassemble their bikes for travel, as well as families who want to keep track of their team of bicycles by serial number. A new version of the app also includes fields to track wattage (power), mileage, heart rate, as well as personal health data such as heart pressure, cholesterol, and PSA (prostate specific antigen).
Path Tracker | $1.99
This navigation tool displays the distance you've traveled, elapsed time, average speed, latitude, longitude, and altitude. It's perfect for recording your route while walking, running, hiking, biking, or traveling on any kind of trip. It's also easy to save your path to the web so you can share it with friends!
AroundMe | Free
This app identifies your location and allows you to choose the nearest bank, bar, gas station, hospital, hotel, movie theatre, restaurant, supermarket, etc. It also shows you a complete list of all the businesses in the category you tap, as well as their distances from where you are.
theNextTrain – 17 Agencies | $4.99
Providing schedules for 17 different Transit Agencies, this app makes for a commuter's best friend. It features individual station schedules, including all stops; trip schedules (between two stations) including trip duration and arrival time; free schedule updates; and interactive system maps. And the really great part is that the schedules work without WiFi or cellular connection; you only need the connection to download and sync schedules.
AccuFuel | $0.99
This app monitors you vehicle's fuel efficiency based on your driving habits. You can use it to track the mileage on all of your cars so you know how much gas your SUV is guzzling or how much money your hybrid is saving. It also comes with standard and trip odometers.
Car Care | $2.99
Car Care reminds you when to perform any type of scheduled maintenance in order to keep your car running at its best and most fuel-efficient. You can also use Car Care to calculate fuel economy, view fuel economy reports, graph your fuel data, and get detailed statistics such as the best fuel type for your vehicle. In addition, Car Care can track as many automobiles as you want.
GREEN SHOPPING APPS
GoodGuide | Free
The GoodGuide app gives you detailed information on the health, environmental, and social performance of your favorite brands, and helps you find safe, healthy, and sustainable products while you shop. Using this app, you can browse, search, or scan a barcode to see detailed ratings for over 70,000 products and companies. GoodGuide's ultimate goal is to help people shop smarter, while also motivating companies to offer better products.
Gorgeously Green Survival Guide | $0.99
From lip sticks to light bulbs, this app will guide you through the confusion of shopping for eco-friendly choices and give you convenient and helpful lists on-the-go. It offers money-saving, environmental tips, tells you which items should be purchased organic, alerts you to what chemicals you should avoid in your makeup, and most importantly, lets you indulge in guilt-free shopping.
Cruelty-Free | Free
This app provides a handy shopping guide for looking up cosmetic, personal care, and household products on-the-go. It lists over 200 US and Canadian companies that do not test on animals and are searchable alphabetically or by product category, so you can be confident that your purchases are cruelty-free.
Skip the paper and have an entire cookbook full of vegetarian recipes at your fingertips, wherever you go. This recently-updated app also includes a vegetarian restaurant finder that gives you the ability to search by city or zip code, so you can always eat healthy and eco-friendly.
VeganXpress | $1.99
This app lists over 110 common restaurants and their menu items that are suitable for vegans. VeganXpress also includes a full list of vegan/vegetarian beers, wine, and snacks. A vegan on a road trip, in a hurry, or out with non-vegan friends or family can use this app to quickly find vegan options and take the hassle out of their diet.
AllOrganic | $0.99
This app will help you eat healthy and naturally by locating organic restaurants, organic food stores, and farmers' markets when you enter your zip code or city.
CARBON FOOTPRINT/HOME POWER MANAGEMENT APPS
This green app provides an estimate of your carbon footprint based on car usage, home-energy usage, and air travel, and compares it to the average US resident. Individuals who use this app will be able to identify the aspects of their lives that contribute most to global warming.
Green Outlet | $1.99
This app helps you identify which of your household appliances are costing you the most to run so you can make better choices about your electricity use. All you have to do is select the types of appliances you use in your home, enter how many hours they are used per day, and Green Outlet will predict your electric bill for the month. Not only does Green Outlet add up the financial cost of your appliance use, it also adds up your household carbon footprint and even alerts you when you have exceeded the US Government's recommended carbon usage.
MyUsage Mobile | Free
If your home, apartment, or business has a smart meter, you can use the MyUsage Mobile app to get information about you electricity, gas, and water consumption anytime, anywhere. With accurate information about your utility use that's available 24/7, you'll be able to reduce your carbon footprint and better manage your budget.
The Kilowatts meter reader allows you to input the measurements you take from your home's conventional outdoor meter and measures your home's electrical power use in real time, giving you immediate feedback on your energy use. By seeing how much electricity is being used during different family activities or when appliances are replaced, the Kilowatts meter reader can help you lower your utility bills and increase the energy efficiency of your home.
Power Saver Home | $0.99
Once you've converted your light bulbs over to compact fluorescent light bulbs, Power Saver Home can provide estimated energy savings, monetary savings, time required to return your investment, and the lifespan of your CFL bulbs in a single, powerful application.
iGuides Energy Tips | $6.99
Get access to tons of tips for reducing your home's energy use, including heating and cooling, insulation, windows, and more with the iGuides Energy Tips app.