Most of us have only a vague idea of our daily carbon emissions; we know that riding the train to work is better than driving, but not by how much. Industrial designer Nick Hunter wants to change that with his wearable carbon credit meter, which gives wearers a monthly allowance of carbon credits to use on transportation.
In Hunter’s vision, commuters wear something called a “Travel Key” on their hand that glows green, yellow, orange or red depending on how effectively the wearer uses public transportation. When citizens get on a train, subway, or bus, they touch their Travel Key to a chip reader that activates a GPS signal. The signal tracks distance traveled and number of passengers onoard to calculate how many carbon credits are used. All information is beamed via WiFi to a government database.
It all seems very Logan’s Run-ish–what happens to people whose Travel Keys glow red? But it’s not hard to imagine a time when such a system is a necessity, especially as climate change predictions become more dire. We already impose carbon caps on countries, so how long could it be until we start monitoring individuals?