AI and the Environment

AI and the Environment

Welcome to #TRVSTLOVES. We curate news, ideas and inspiration from across the world which demonstrate how real action can accomplish positive social impact. This time we’re looking at AI and how it can have a positive impact on our environment in many different ways.

How AI can transform wildlife conservation

Wildlife Conservation

Our fragile ecosystems are under immense pressure, and current monitoring methods aren’t able to scale globally - so much is still manually led. What’s needed is a coordinated approach between the private and public sectors to create an opportunity for AI to monitor data and maps to transform wildlife conservation. When it comes to using AI, wildlife conservation is relatively behind compared to other sectors, but there are signs of it catching up;  a number of AI startups are cropping up and are looking to gain further insight on how to protect endangered species.

Clarity AI receives funding to expand

Clarity AI

Stocks with high ESG ratings have been outperforming, even in the volatile environment of 2020, according to Fidelity International. With this in mind, Clarity AI, an impact rating agency, has managed to raise $15m with Deutsche Börse to expand their social impact platform. The company hopes to “contribute to a more socially efficient capital allocation” by bringing investors comprehensive software to transparently manage their portfolios. It creates visuals which show both social and environmental impact and offers recommendations on how to rebalance portfolios to optimise social impact investing.

AI to help cities manage transport

AI Transport

How much do you know about automated vehicles? The idea has been bouncing around for a long while, and it’s possible that the car you currently drive already has a number of automated features built in (think park assist and cruise control). That’s one end of the scale, but the other includes functions which will allow AI to help cities to better manage transport; some of these include urban autopilot, traffic jam autopilot and autonomous valet parking. There will be a need for cities to reimagine the way in which transport can support a growing population as well as reduce emissions, and we expect AI will be a big part of this transformation.

Emirates team up with Winnow to reduce food waste


We may not be flying as much this year, but behind the scenes, Emirates has been looking at ways to reduce food waste. They’ve recently teamed up with UK startup Winnow to reduce their food waste by 35%. For Winnow, it’s all about the data - they start by taking photographs of food waste and track how much is consistently being thrown out. Based on this information, they carry out assessments which highlight the volume, value, and environmental impact of the waste. A quick google shows that in 2016, airline passengers generated 5.2m tonnes of waste, so we really hope that Emirates leads the way for other airlines to review their approach and commit  to reducing foodwaste.

Analytics4Society Podcast

This episode came out a year ago, but still well worth a listen, and it’s not overly long either - just under half an hour. Analytics4Society looks at how AI can help the environment and how it can support the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. The chat covers a lot, including modern medicine, machine learning, agricultural data and pollution management. It’s also worth checking out WildTrack, a company mentioned on the podcast which is using AI to monitor wildlife.

Sam is a professional writer with a particular interest in promoting sustainable practices for small businesses.
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