Designers are working on a way to monitor your environmental impact via a wearable device.
So you want to reduce your carbon footprint, but you don’t know where to start. Your daily habits, from driving a car to eating meat, add up. You can try to calculate your environmental impact using online tools from the EPA or the Nature Conservancy, but you need to plug in a lot of data in order to get your estimate. It’s easy to lose track.
That’s where the wearable Worldbeing could help. By constantly monitoring your purchases and habits, it’ll give you the most accurate picture of your daily energy use. Think of it like a Fitbit for your carbon footprint.
Right now, it’s just a concept, developed by the design agency Layer and supported by Carbon Trust. It anticipates a future in which all goods and services are labeled with their carbon footprints and all purchases are instantly and seamlessly tracked. The wristband, made out of recycled e-waste, would display your impact in real time. Open the companion app to set daily carbon targets, view detailed reports and graphs of your carbon use, and challenge your friends to reduce their footprints.
Of course, there are glaring privacy concerns with a device like this, which has access to some of the most intimate information about an individual’s daily routine. Worldbeing offers a trade-off that’s become increasingly common these days: personal data in exchange for convenience. On the other hand, its fully integrated system might be just the kick in the pants some users need to reduce their energy use.
The Worldbeing video, above, sets an ambitious timeline for the device, projecting a product launch in 2017. The device is still far from becoming reality; it’s not even Kickstarter official. Layer has launched a Thunderclap campaign to drum up support on social media—and entice potential investors to bring the concept to life. But as the wearable market continues to expand, Worldbeing doesn’t look all that futuristic.