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February 26, 2008

Carbon Hero key chain tracks your travel emissions

Carbon_hero_2 For most of us, transportation is the biggest way in which we contribute to carbon emissions. But because carbon is invisible, it makes it difficult for us to witness the impact of our actions and improve our daily behaviors.

Enter the Carbon Hero, which promises to make your transportation footprint visible.

The device itself is a key chain which is equipped with Bluetooth technology that lets it present an interface on your mobile phone.

Via GPS, the keychain is able to deduce when you are traveling, how far you have traveled, and what method of transport you have used. It can handle airplanes, trains, the tube, buses, bikes, and different types of cars. I'm not certain to what degree this is automated vs. manual input, but the website promises it is automatic and easy, while simultaneously keeping your data private.

Carbon_hero2 Then it plots the results of your travel via your cell phone and compares you to the national averages, helping you to get a more visible read on the impact of your habits.

One can see how this data might ultimately become available on the web to track the transportation impacts of cities, areas, and countries and encourage them to compete against each other.

It's an interesting concept, but only available in the UK presently. If you've trialled one, be sure to let us know.

You can learn more about the device at http://www.carbonhero.net.

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