5 Climate Change Tools to Understand and Fight Global Warming
Climate change is a growing concern across the world. The need of the hour is to act now to reverse its effects. These apps and websites will tell you how you can make a difference, and even point out some truths about global warming.
At this point, the scientific community has largely agreed that man-made factors have resulted in climate change. In fact, you can even see climate change on Google Earth. It seems like you can’t reverse those effects through your efforts alone. But you’d be surprised by how much impact your actions alone can have. In fact, even if you don’t want to do anything, you can pay to offset your carbon footprint.
1. Skeptical Science (Web): Debunk Myths About Climate Change Denial
There are a lot of myths and pseudo-scientific claims used to deny the realities of climate change and global warming. Skeptical Science takes the problem head on by busting these denials and skepticism with cold, hard facts.
If you’ve ever read something that made you think climate change is a myth or want to argue with a global warming skeptic, these are the facts and figures you need to realize the reality of the situation. There are almost 200 commonly used myths and arguments against climate change listed in the Arguments section of the portal.
Each of these has a corresponding blog post that goes into the details of what science says about that myth. Plus the website is updated regularly with new findings on climate change and related topics.
Skeptical Science is run by several volunteers but headed by John Cook, a renowned climate change researcher, professor, and author. Cook also designed the free online course Making Sense of Climate Change Denial.
2. ClimateChoice (Web): What You Can Do to Help
Blog posts scattered across the internet will try to tell you the ways in which you can help fight climate change. But there isn’t one easy central resource. So Steven Hylands decided to make Climate Choice.
The website has easy-to-understand guides on how you can make a positive impact if you can tweak your lifestyle. If you don’t want to read the full guide, there are helpful TL;DRs for each section too.
In each section, you will understand how that choice contributes to climate change. Then the guide advises what you can do right now as well as how much that simple change would help. From paying to offset your carbon footprint to changing how often you employ single-use items, these small steps can have big results.
Take some time and go through the full website, which also links to tools for carbon footprint calculation, local agencies and political representatives that fight climate change, as well as other useful information.
3. Wren (Web): Calculate and Offset Your Carbon Footprint
There are organizations and projects trying their best to reverse the effects of climate change. If you can’t reduce your carbon footprint easily with lifestyle changes, you can still offset it by financially supporting such projects. That’s where Wren comes in.
When you sign up for Wren, you will first have to add where you live and answer a few more questions to figure out your current carbon footprint. Wren uses data from reliable universities and the World Bank to come up with average points for common lifestyle choices based on your input. You can dive into each section (transportation, natural gas, electricity, diet, goods, services, and home) to further tweak your values precisely.
Once you have your carbon footprint, Wren will suggest a few projects to offset your carbon emissions.
Pick one that you’d like to support, and then add your credit card. It’s like a subscription service for your carbon footprint, and would probably cost less than a Netflix subscription.
There’s another similar service you should check out called Chooose. There isn’t a simple calculator, but there are other CO2-reducing projects you can subscribe to this way.
4. JouleBug (Android, iOS): Tracker for Your Green, Climate-Saving Actions
If you’ve decided to take action towards climate change, try this app. JouleBug will teach you small steps by which you can live a greener lifestyle, along with tracking every good move and letting you compete with friends.
Every time you do something positive towards the Earth, “buzz” the action in JouleBug. Some of the common actions include recycling, turning the lights out when you leave a room, reusing a bottle of water, and volunteering in your community. The actions are spread across categories like seasonal, habits, energy, transportation, office, waste, shopping, etc.
Add up your buzz points to compete with friends who are also living the eco-friendly life. You can also participate in regular JouleBug challenges with other users, gaining bonus points for photos and comments in the community.
5. Climate 365 (Web): Easiest Digital Activism for Climate Change
You don’t have to make dramatic changes or protest in the streets to mark your opposition to climate change to make your voice heard. Climate 365 offers perhaps the simplest method of digital activism.
All you have to do is grant Climate 365 access to your Gmail account. Using that, the app will send emails from you to representatives of the 365 most polluted cities on Earth, organizations with negative environmental impact, and change-makers from different governments. Plus, the developers of the app will also plant a tree in your name.
Each email is unique and personalized for the recipient. The app is a new take on the classic “sign a petition” form of digital activism. If a representative gets hundreds or thousands of emails to affect change, then they just might listen, right?
Other Ways to Go Green
Climate change and global warming is just a smaller part of the larger adverse effects we have on nature. And if you know how to live a greener lifestyle, you could have a positive impact on the environment.
A good place to start is with these free green apps for an eco-friendly lifestyle which suggest best practices for shopping, recycling, and other daily habits.