This article is sponsored by Belong.
An app has just been released that will tell you exactly how much your phone usage contributes to Australia’s CO2 emissions.
Belong’s Carbon Thumbprint visual calculator converts the time you spend using your mobile data network into grams of carbon dioxide, using augmented reality to illustrate how many kilograms you’re putting out into the atmosphere.
This includes video streams and time on Instagram, as well as emails you send and receive — essentially every activity that requires data.
For people, like myself, who hadn’t connected the dots between data usage and our contribution to Australia’s emission of carbon dioxide, reading the app’s results will certainly be a humbling experience and might actually encourage a swath of phone users to think twice about who their telco provider is.
If you have reservations about using an app that tells you how using apps increase our carbon thumbprint (the irony is not lost on us), it’s worth noting that the visual calculator is the brainchild of Belong, Australia’s first carbon-neutral telco.
In layman’s terms, this means that the carbon emissions associated with Belong are offset or reduced by carbon abatement and renewable energy projects they invest in, such as the Murra Warra Wind Farm in Victoria and the Emerald Solar Park in Queensland.
You can give the Carbon Thumbprint visual calculator a whirl for yourself here, and if you happen to have a mobile plan with Belong yourself, you can feel a touch less guilty about using mobile data to download the app and spending six hours a day lurking on Instagram.
Our phones are hardly going anywhere, so we may as well make informed decisions that could decrease our own carbon thumbprint.