Practice English Speaking&Listening with: An app which tracks your carbon footprint | North - Overview

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Hi, have you ever thought of how

your personal carbon footprint looks like

if we all would have the same carbon budget

to stay below two degrees of global warming.

Would you be below or above the limit?

There are many services

that try to estimate your footprint.

In this video I want to give an overview of

an app called North which has just been

released in a beta version and has a

slightly different approach to other services.

as always I am NOT sponsored and just personally

interested in this app and the company behind it.

So instead of guessing your average commutes

electricity usage and consumptions, this

app can pull data from a number of services to track

most of your emissions automatically.

Let's first have a quick look at how it works

in the words of Olivier Corradi, one of the creators behind it.

So how does your personal carbon footprint look like? Can you already see it?

So this is my footprint.

If you look here for example this is the month of November you can see here that

it's mostly dominated by my travel and my travel is actually a plane that I

took here so the plane immediately ruins your whole thing. But if you can

look at here a month where I didn't take the plane here then here you have

electricity which represents a small portion of mine - the yellow part -

you have purchase in orange you have travel here and then you have food as

well and food is based on a preference that I'm putting in where I'm saying you

know i roughly eat varied diets sometimes meat

sometimes not and then I can edit it on a daily basis if I want to correct it

and then we have this home screen which shows you like a data visualization in

bubbles and so the size of the bubble showcases the amount of emissions and I

mean if you look at this thing like the plane. Are these like two planes? Yeah

It is two planes and the plane is basically like the biggest source of

emissions by far. I mean you look at how big this thing is compared like the

small bubbles which are you know daily food and daily electricity usage.

So the way it works is that here you have

an app store here which we call

the integration store actually. We completely open-source you can build

your own integration if you want. The idea is that you connect to for example

your smart meter at home so I'm a customer at Barry - a danish retailer

so I can connect it here if you're in France you can connect your Linky and if

you have a Renault Zoé - the electric vehicle - or a Tesla, you can connect

it here and what this will do is that it will fetch periodically from the car

from the smart meter - when did you use electricity and what is the associated

footprint here. And you can connect other services here I've connected my my

bank account here and this tells me when I buy some stuff

what is the footprint of it. We are playing around with some experiments

like activity detection system that uses the phone sensors to figure out what is the

transportation mode you are currently in if you're biking, taking the car, taking

the train so on. And then we have public transportation systems as well

like Rejsekort in Denmark or Transport for London in the UK.

So what is the goal of the company behind the app and how do they earn money?

The main goal of the company is to help people understand and reduce their carbon footprint.

The app is free

they also don't plan to earn money with the data.

In fact they plan to put privacy first and give you the option to store data only on your phone

and not transfer it to their servers

which in return means that if you lose your phone

your data is lost as well. If other services which you activate collect data

they plan to communicate this transparently.

They told me they work on a business version for organizations

and this is where they want to earn money

while this personal version stays free.

So who can benefit from the beta version right now?

If you live in Denmark or Great Britain

the beta version might already be of use to you but if you live in a

different country - as I do - you might need to wait until services from your country

are added. At the moment you can suggest services you use which you would like to

have integrated. If you are a software developer you can help to integrate

further services yourself since North has an open-source repository on GitHub.

so what do I think of North?

North has great visualizations which makes it a fun experience to reflect.

And I think the app has great potential if they

manage to integrate the most relevant services people use.

While in general the automated tracking works for

transportation services and electricity providers

your food choices remain an average guess.

A big challenge might be

to get access to the data from railway and energy companies

don't yet provide an interface. I cannot draw a final conclusion of the app since

the services I use in Germany are not integrated yet. But what do you think of

North is this a good way to learn about ones footprint or even change behavior?

Or do you think it is just a geeky tool for data nerds?

Would you use the app or would you not?

and what are your experiences with other carbon calculators?

Let me know in the comments below

and don't forget to subscribe if

you'd like to hear about more trends in

mobility, renewable energy and other

climate change solutions.

Thanks for watching and see you next time.

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