How Is IBM Trying To Use AI To Reduce Pollution?

It is believed that 16% of deaths worldwide are related to pollution.

Air pollution is a major cause of concern in many countries. Take India’s Delhi, for example. The quality of air is so poor in the city that many people fall sick every day because of it. The pollution increase is plaguing many other cities across the globe and affecting the lives of many individuals. Diseases such as asthma, bronchitis, COPD, and other breathing issues impact many people living in cities with high air pollution.

Looking at the wide-level influence of the air-pollution, sustainability is no more the solution. This is not to say that government, citizens, and organizations should not function sustainably. It only means the measures to reduce pollution and increase the quality of air should be drastic.

A study revealed that if you go out for a walk in Beijing, it is equal to smoking 30-cigarettes in one day. The emission from almost everything such as vehicles, construction sites, manufacturing units, and other industrial units has led to decades worth of damage to air quality.

Talking about Beijing in particular, then back in 2012, the air pollution was so high that it reduced the efficiency of every plan decided by the government. The government ended up partnering with IBM to find an AI-based solution for reducing air pollution. This technology finds out the sources of air pollution. The sensors used can track humidity, traffic levels, wind patterns, and weather.

The technology used by IBM particularly had the power to predict the pollution trend 10 days in advanced. Utilizing this knowledge, IBM was able to generate pollution forecast based on per kilometer with high resolution. This was achieved 72 hours before to warn the citizens of the exact situation.

The initiative also helped the Beijing government to figure out the sources of pollution, which was factory output and traffic. Appropriate measures were taken to reduce traffic’s smog-generating pollutants. Needless to say, there was a decrease in 35% pollutants from 2012 to 2017 in Beijing. This was a ground-breaking success achieved by IBM which enabled the company to take the initiative to other countries such as India, China, and South Africa.

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