Fuel-guzzling vehicles appear to be the major source of greenhouse gases, but a lesser-known fact is that cement has a larger carbon footprint than all the world’s trucks combined. But people are used to measuring carbon emissions from what meets the eye and ignoring the less visible causes of global warming. To gauge the impact of the Middle East’s sustainable living push against climate change, the Arab Youth Climate Movement Qatar (AYCMQ) has developed an app to measure carbon emissions from each household. It processes information including the number of cars, electricity and gas consumption, and the type of housing, to calculate a home’s environmental impact. Based on this information, users will receive suggestions for recycling and reusing, along with other measures to reduce carbon emissions. After the first measurement, users get a code for comparing future readings with the original carbon footprint. The platform focuses on promoting sustainable living on an individual level, to create a collective impact against climate change. Other steps for sustainability in the region include the installation of smart meters by the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA). The devices notify people about their power and water consumption, prompting them to take measures for sustainable living. Saudi Arabia has also deployed more than 500,000 smart meters, for efficient use of power in the region. Last year, Dubai Municipality launched an environmental satellite to track emissions in the city’s environment. Apart from looking at aerosol and pollution, it also maps the volume of greenhouse gases in specific areas of Dubai and the UAE. Reducing emissions by turning towards electric vehicles or adopting clean fuels may seem simple. But meeting these targets is challenging since it requires that people transform their lifestyles. In this scenario measuring the carbon footprint in everyday life to manage it, is one step forward, facilitated by emission tracking tech.
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Fast Company's Most Creative People in Business list comes to the Middle East