'IBM operates at the intersection of technology and sustainability'

18 December 2023 Consultancy-me.com 3 min. read

IBM and its subsidiary IBM Consulting operate at the forefront of innovative projects that leverage artificial intelligence and advanced technologies to improve sustainability in business and society. Hendrik Hamann, Chief Science Officer for Climate and Sustainability at IBM, shares examples of the firm’s initiatives in the Middle East.

At IBM, we are convinced that the intersection of technology, particularly AI and foundation models, and sustainability is proving to be a pivotal force in addressing the pressing challenge of environmental sustainability.

Across all corners of the globe, IBM is working with governments, private sector companies and non-profits on addressing and resolving pressing sustainability challenges. In the Middle East, a region we have been serving for decades, this is no different.

'IBM operates at the intersection of technology and sustainability'

Hendrik Hamann, Chief Science Officer for Climate and Sustainability at IBM

At COP28, IBM announced the development of a new groundbreaking foundation model for weather and climate in collaboration with NASA. This aims to address climate change by accelerating environmental insights discovery. This new foundation model works, unlike LLMs with geospatial data. And is an extension of IBM’s previous work on foundation models for satellite data.

The geospatial foundation model for satellite data was leveraged in the UAE in partnership with Mohamed Bin Zayed University of Artificial Intelligence (MBZUAI). The goal is to understand the urban environment in Abu Dhabi. It also aims to explore how the underlying landscape in the UAE influences the formation of urban heat islands.

We have also recently partnered with the University of Sharjah. This collaboration focuses on creating models to monitor and forecast water access conditions in arid regions. It can be done by leveraging the IBM Sustainability Accelerator. We will also be working on a first-of-its-kind roadmap of sustainability skills courses, available for free through IBM SkillsBuild, which will empower future climate action.

To help close the global artificial intelligence skills gap, we recently announced a commitment to train 2 million learners in AI by the end of 2026. We are particularly focusing on underrepresented communities. To achieve this goal at a global scale, IBM is expanding AI education collaborations with universities globally. We are collaborating with partners to deliver AI training to adult learners. Also, we are launching new generative AI coursework through IBM SkillsBuild.

In tandem, we are working with the Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority (SDAIA) to utilize geospatial AI models and satellite data to quantify CO2 emissions and identify hotspots for potential mitigation.

Catalyst for climate change

Building on our innovative ecosystem and collaborative ethos, we envision a future where technology addresses sustainability challenges and propels transformative impact. IBM’s diverse range of projects showcases its commitment to using technology as a catalyst for positive change, from addressing climate challenges to revolutionizing supply chain transparency and fostering sustainable development globally.