IBM announced new methods for applying its geospatial artificial intelligence technologies, including the IBM Geospatial Model developed in collaboration with NASA, to climate, as well as urban heat island analysis in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), afforestation in Kenya, and climate resilience in the United Kingdom (UK).

“Climate change is a real and pressing issue that we must find new ways to address as quickly and efficiently as possible, including through today’s most advanced AI technologies,” said Alessandro Curioni, IBM Fellow and Vice President, Accelerated Discovery at IBM.

IBM continues to develop its strategy for artificial intelligence models that are trained on geospatial information such as satellite imagery and provide the capability to address climate change.

Alessandro Curioni, IBM Fellow and Vice President, Accelerated Discovery at IBM added “AI foundation models utilizing geospatial data can be a game-changer because they allow us to better understand, prepare and address the many climate-related events effecting the health of our planet in a manner and speed never before seen. We are hopeful these technologies can help accelerate the rate at which we derive and apply solutions for a safer and healthier planet for future generations”.

Unlike traditional AI models tailored to specialist tasks, knowledge-based geospatial models – spanning satellite and weather data – create knowledge representations from petabytes and exabytes of climate-related data that can facilitate accelerated and streamlined discovery of environmental insights and solutions.

” This research underscores the vital role of AI in tackling global issues, emphasizing the urgency of continued exploration and innovation. By harnessing the power of AI, we are not merely addressing challenges; we are proactively shaping solutions for a sustainable future. In a world confronted by unprecedented challenges, MBZUAI stands at the forefront of pioneering research in AI, recognizing the transformative power it holds”, said professor Tim Baldwin, MBZUAI Acting Provost.

These models can also be refined and applied across multiple domains defining or revealing climate change, from flood detection to fire scarring.

Beyond their initial commitment to build and deploy a geospatial foundation model, IBM and NASA have also announced work on a new, separate AI foundation model for weather and climate. By applying AI technology from IBM, the model aims to improve the accuracy, speed and affordability of weather forecasting and other climate applications.

Sample applications of the model not only include forecasting, but also super-resolution downscaling, identifying conditions conducive to wildfires, and predicting meteorological phenomena. IBM researchers will work alongside NASA domain experts to train and validate the model.

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