Waste Free Weekend: Harness technology to reduce personal waste

Categories: Environment

Recently cleaning out the old shed at my parents’ house, my dad uncovered an old notebook. As we flipped through the pages, reminiscing over his old reminders and to-do lists, one note jumped out at me, a reminder to learn how to use a hand-held computer, also known as an advanced calculator. Keep in mind this was 1980 and a year before IBM came out with the first personal computer.

As I sit here typing on my computer with a cell phone and iPad on the table beside me, I am truly impacted by just how much change has happened in my lifetime. So many changes, so fast, and not all noteworthy.

While our technology has advanced, our planet has suffered. In the last 10 years, for example, we have produced more plastic than in the whole of the last century. That is a development I am less inclined to brag about. Yet, reflecting I thought, how can we use our modern, device-bound world to fix this rapid and ever-present problem. Maybe, just maybe, our modern devices can help us return to a simpler less contaminated lifestyle reminiscent of the past.

Here are some great options for harnessing technology to reduce your personal waste.

Plastic Score Zero Waste Dining

PlasticScore ties rating to the sustainability of different restaurants. You can reduce your plastic footprint and invest your money to establishments who support a world free of plastic pollution!

Love Zero Waste

This is an app primarily dedicated to recycling for the Roaring Fork and Colorado River Valleys but looking to expand. You simply enter the item you are looking to dispose and get ideas and resources to keep that material out of the landfill.


Oroeco helps you track your climate impact with a unique footprint calculator. Learn where you shine and how you can improve your impact on the planet.


JouleBug helps to encourage and teach sustainable habits into your everyday life with tips and a social network to connect with a likeminded community. A unique point system correlates to each positive action and how it affects your wallet and environment.

Giki uses your camera to scan products at the grocery store to check how sustainable they are. Fast and easy education on the go to put your dollars to products and companies who care.

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