Innovation That Matters

| Photo source ClimaSens

A platform for assessing heat risk in a changing climate


One company is using AI to help the communities most vulnerable to the risks of extreme weather and heat

Spotted: Climate change is not simply an average rise of temperatures around the globe. Perhaps more devastating is the reality that it also brings about extreme weather both more frequently and with greater intensity. With areas in Australia being hit by both bushfires and floods in a matter of days, it is clear extreme weather will only become exacerbated as global warming worsens. This is where ClimaSens comes in, with its use of artificial intelligence (AI) to help identify and, as a result, limit the impact of extreme heat. 

The AI platform, HeatSens, takes advantage of several different sources of information such as weather stations, satellite imagery, and climate models. All this data is then analysed and presented in an easily interpreted dashboard for people to read and extrapolate vital information regarding extreme heat weather. 

The platform provides what is known as a heat risk assessment to identify genuinely vulnerable communities, by using social vulnerability indicators, exposure, heat hazard readings, and even past examples of extreme heat. This, in turn, allows proactive measures to be taken so communities are not so at the mercy of extreme weather. 

In fact, the technology has already been tested by the Australian RedCross, which used it to create the Telecross project that allows vulnerable people to be identified so they can be better supported during heatwaves. 

ClimaSens has also just announced a partnership with The New School Urban Systems Lab in New York, supported by a $5 million (around €4.7 million) grant courtesy of Google’s Impact Challenge on Climate Innovation. The partnership, which also includes involvement from teams at the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Stockholm University, and George Mason University, will see the development of ClimateIQ – an AI tool that provides climate risk information on a global scale. This new partnership and funding will also allow ClimaSens to branch out beyond its Australian base and into the US and Europe. 

Springwise has also spotted other ways AI is helping organisations manage and mitigate their climate impact, including one platform that helps farmers reduce environmental impact and cost as well as tech that helps data centres reduce their environmental impact.

Written By: Archie Cox




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