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Your Business’s Biggest Climate Change Concerns – How AI Might Help Your Business’s Biggest Climate Change Concerns – How AI Might Help
Businesses are scrambling to deal with the effects of climate change. We’re going to have to make some serious decisions for how humanity will... Your Business’s Biggest Climate Change Concerns – How AI Might Help

Businesses are scrambling to deal with the effects of climate change. We’re going to have to make some serious decisions for how humanity will move forward, but our future is looking a little brighter with the addition of AI. Here are a few ways AI could help alleviate the effects of climate change on your business and help your business reduce its contribution to climate change.

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Better Materials for Climate Change

Two of the biggest carbon producers, concrete and steel, are business staples. It’s tough to find any supply chain that doesn’t have either of those two materials, so businesses are starting to look for other,  safer materials. 

AI can help with the discovery process for new materials through complex experiments. Researchers can model processes faster and run more processes at once, speeding up discovery and increasing our power to test hypotheses. You might soon find yourself replacing these materials altogether. 

Better Buildings

If you’re in an office building, you’re contributing to about a quarter of global emissions. Buildings are rarely retrofitted with better technology once they’re built, so office buildings that stand for more than a few years could be a significant waste factor.

AI and IoT can help improve the quality of buildings through smart sensors that can control factors that affect energy use, such as air temperature or water usage. With AI to monitor the whole thing, buildings become significantly more efficient without increasing human labor. If you own the building where you are, this could come at significant cost savings to you.

Better Predictions

Nothing messes up your supply chain like an extreme weather event. While we’ve certainly gotten better at predicting these things, we’re still woefully underprepared for most of our extreme weather events. With climate change, those events are even less predictable. 

AI could help build better prediction models for our extreme weather, giving your business a better heads up for when the weather could interrupt your supply chain or cause interruptions in service. And if you depend on manufacturing, those sources could use AI to reduce the surprises along the way.

Better Measurements

Right now, it’s challenging to implement the type of continuous monitoring we need to get real insights into carbon production. We may be able to use AI not only to monitor carbon production in areas where we don’t have typical sensors but also to get information into the hands of individuals.

Knowing where our carbon comes from can help give industries the edge in building new tech and processes that prevent the acceleration of climate change. For example, AI showed investors recently that coal plants aren’t as lucrative as previously, though, encouraging investors to look elsewhere for energy.

Businesses may also be able to tap into individual carbon foot monitoring to offer customers incentives for reducing their footprints. Much like the gamification of customer engagement, this could also drive customers to engage with companies or allow companies to assess better the risk of customers where it’s applicable. 

Better Utilities

Utilities can be significant expenses for businesses. As we switch to energy-efficient systems, AI may be able to revolutionize the energy sector by improving the way we consume energy and the way we measure it. 

We’re already experimenting with using AI to process the massive data within energy. With better prediction models, we can manage energy demand and create systems that not only reduce our dependence on nonrenewable energies but possibly lower the cost of delivering energy across the board — good news for the business sector.

AI’s Climate Change Answer 

Your business will be impacted by climate change if it hasn’t been already. Humans are moving towards different types of energy, better prediction models, and increased responsibility. If your company can measure its own footprint and take advantage of systems that lower cost overall, it’s going to be a big boon to business.

Some of AI’s most significant contributions to business have been reducing downtime. Environmental factors based on climate change can cause significant downtime when we aren’t able to predict and quickly react. All that could change both for your supply chain and the manufacturing that ensures your products are delivered on time. 

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AI’s ability to keep climate change in check isn’t magic. AI has a carbon footprint itself, and legislation is still needed to mitigate the effects of climate change. However, AI use cases within climate change hold huge potential for business. Whether your organization is involved in helping fight climate change through research and services or AI’s developments will make operations easier for your company, the potential is something to pay attention to in the coming years.

Elizabeth Wallace

Elizabeth Wallace, ODSC

Elizabeth is a Nashville-based freelance writer with a soft spot for startups. She spent 13 years teaching language in higher ed and now helps startups and other organizations explain - clearly - what it is they do. Connect with her on LinkedIn here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/elizabethawallace/

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