It may be difficult to keep track of the environmental impact of technology given its rapid advancement. While Earth Day is a worldwide event, the lifestyle improvements you can make begin right at home. Here are five tech solutions you can use with your cellphones, computers, accessories, and other devices to do your part and benefit the environment in the long term.
1. Extend the useful life of current products
When it comes to technology, sustainability is the name of the game. The longer you can stretch a product’s life, the longer you put off buying anything new. This may appear insignificant, but on a broader scale, it constitutes a substantial alteration, similar to the one they will discuss later. Being sustainable entails more than just putting up with your damaged screen for another two years. Instead of buying a new product, repair what is repairable; this could be a phone, a laptop, a refrigerator, or anything else. Consider acquiring a desktop instead of a laptop if you operate remotely and aren’t on the go frequently, at least for work.
If you enjoy fiddling with phone software, consider installing a custom ROM to extend the life of your phone even further. Remember, if you need a new one, acquire one, but don’t upgrade unless it’s really necessary. Finally, extending the life of your equipment saves you a lot of money.
2. Look into the used market
Consider the used phone market if acquiring a brand new phone or laptop is not a priority above the actual benefits that the new gadget provides. You can often find amazing prices on everything from mobile phones, laptops, and desktop settings to accessories like keyboards, mice, and gamepads on portals like Quikr and OLX.
Once you’ve figured out how to shop at secondhand markets, you’ll be able to find great bargains. Some things to keep in mind are to look for gadgets with little to no repair history and to bargain if a device has been used for too long. When you buy used, you get a new device, but the number of new devices unboxed stays the same, which is a terrific strategy to reduce e-waste over time.
3. Look at the energy ratings on all of your appliances
BEE energy ratings, which are based on a five-star system, indicate how energy efficient a modern appliance is. The greater the star rating, the more energy efficient the product, with 5-star products being the most efficient. The math is simple: the better the stars, the less of an influence on the environment and the more money you save on your electricity bill.
4. Remove any superfluous data from the cloud
Cloud storage is seen as the way of the future because it eliminates the need for space on your hard drive or phone storage. As a result, it can’t impact the planet’s physical, material properties, right? Wrong.
Cloud storage, contrary to popular assumption, does take up real space. Everything in the cloud, from your email inbox to terabytes of vacation images and movies, is kept someplace in a data centre. Because, unlike your computer, these data centres must be up and functioning 24 hours a day, seven days a week, they consume a lot of energy.
Do you mean it’s a terrible idea to use cloud storage? Certainly not. Cloud storage is beneficial in a lot more ways than people realise. These data centres are maintained and operated in such a way that energy consumption is kept to a minimum. Also, a terabyte of storage for 100 workers in a data centre makes more sense than a hundred 1TB hard discs manufactured for the same purpose.
However, by just preserving what we need and avoiding clutter, you can help to reduce excessive cloud storage usage. This involves eliminating files you no longer use, as well as old emails you will never open.
5. Make extensive use of digital alternatives
You’ve certainly heard it before, but embracing digital alternatives for everything from displaying your driver’s licence to paying your energy bill has a lot of advantages that revolve around simplicity of use and convenience.
You are, however, benefiting the environment every time you make an online transaction or decline a bank receipt at an ATM machine in favour of monitoring your remaining cash via a smartphone app. You may now pay and receive money online, store essential documents on your phone, and complete a lot of work using websites rather than physically driving to locations. This also saves you time and money on gas.