Student’s Corner

For many years now, Google Maps is almost synonymous to GPS navigation. With some 70% of market share, Google Maps is the most popular navigation app among millions of daily commuters, thanks to its superior service and features (such as real-time traffic). The navigation giant has just gotten better, with a recent update that shows you the lowest carbon route for your journey.

Google Maps Screenshot
Google Maps recommending the most fuel-efficient route from Eastman to River Campus

To help its users reduce their environmental impact, Google Maps now features an algorithm that estimates the route generating the lowest carbon footprint based on road inclines and real-time traffic data. By default, the navigation app will show the route with the lowest carbon footprint when the ETA (Estimated Arrival Time) is almost the same as the fastest route. You can also compare the relative CO2 impact between routes and adjust your setting to always choose the most eco-friendly route.

For many Americans, commuting to work or school by car is an imperative. While we are slowly transitioning to electric vehicles, Google Maps’ fuel-efficiency feature is a great option to reduce the emission of carbon dioxide. The new feature might seem insignificant but has a potentially large impact on the large scale. This is one way that we can use technology for the benefit of the planet.


Written by Kelly Jean, Class of 2022

Photo Credit: Unsplash