New app measures and rewards your transportation CO2 fitness

This sustainable mobility app tracks your transport CO2 emissions and helps you balance your travel footprint, using a virtual green currency.

In order to start making more sustainable transportation choices, it's important to understand the amounts of CO2 emissions our current methods of transport are responsible for, whether we drive or cycle or take the bus, and to compare them to our other options, so we're making the greenest choice when we can. A new mobile app aims to make that data much easier to access by serving as a personal transport CO2 tracker, which is intended to encourage, motivate, and reward people to make greener travel choices.

Changers, the company which brought us the tweeting solar charger and the socially networked solar credit system, is back with a new offering, an app called Changers CO2 Fit, which essentially tracks your personal transport CO2 balance and allows you to earn offsets in the form of CO2 certificates.

The CO2 Fit app, which is for both iOS and Android platforms, makes carbon emissions personal by tracking each trip you take, and what method of transport is used (car, bicycle, public transportation, train, or plane), to calculate the amount of CO2 emissions generated (or avoided) for each trip. Users simply start the app before each trip, and the app will track the speed and distance, and then calculate a CO2 value for that journey, which will get added to (or subtracted from) the user's CO2 account balance on Changers. Savings on CO2 emissions are rewarded with Recoins, which is Changers' virtual green currency that can be used to 'buy' offsets for other trips that use transport methods with higher CO2 emissions.

Low-carbon trips, such as going by bike, earn a CO2 savings on the account, while driving trips get a CO2 emissions value added to the account, and users can keep track of their travel CO2 balance from the app. Users can also choose to purchase offsets, in the form of climate certificates, right from the app, in order to compensate for other trips or to reduce their overall carbon footprint. Considering that the average CO2 emissions per capita in North America is a staggering 22 tonnes per year, and that it's been estimated that we need to lower our per capita CO2 emissions to below 2.5 tonnes per year to hit our climate goals, this could be one way to help more people track and manage one aspect of their carbon footprints.

For each kilometer traveled by bicycle, users earn one Recoin from Changers, which is enough to compensate for 1 kg of CO2 emissions. For other transportation methods, such as public transport, a combination of CO2 savings and emissions is recorded, which is based on the difference in the amount of emissions between driving a car and taking the bus or train, using CO2 data from the German Federal Environment Agency.

Changers also offers users awards and badges in the app, as well as allowing users to compete with others around the world in their quest for transportation CO2 fitness. Grab this free download for Android or for iOS, or find out more at Changers.

Tags: Apps | Carbon Emissions | Transportation

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