Google launches sustainability tools to help cities, businesses in mapping environmental data

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by KnowESG
Image Courtesy of UnSplash

Google introduces new sustainability tools to assist cities and businesses in mapping environmental data. Developers can easily map solar, air quality, and pollen information with the help of three new APIs from the Google Maps Platform.

Our generation's biggest problem is climate change, and solving it will require cooperation from all of us. We are aiming to share knowledge about the planet through tools and technologies like Google Earth, Earth Engine, and Environmental Insights Explorer that combine a rich map of the world with cutting-edge AI in order to encourage everyone to take action.

With knowledge of how the environment is evolving, we can create sustainability tools and aid other businesses in doing the same. And we can work towards our goal of assisting people, cities, and partners in lowering their combined yearly carbon equivalent emissions by 1 gigaton by 2030.

We are currently enhancing our sustainability offerings with new Google Maps Platform products. These devices use artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to deliver up-to-date data on solar potential, air quality, and pollen levels, in addition to aerial photography and environmental data. With the aid of this technology, programmers, companies, and organisations can create tools for mapping and reducing environmental impact.

We started Project Sunroof in 2015 to assist people in learning about the anticipated solar potential and savings in their location, and this has helped to promote the usage of solar technology. Soon after, businesses started showing an interest in getting this information, so now we're providing it to them.

With the help of computational power and mapping tools, our new Solar API provides detailed rooftop solar potential data for more than 320 million buildings in 40 nations, including the U.S., France, and Japan. We developed an AI model to extract 3D information about the roof geometry, along with specifics like trees and shading, from aerial imagery in order to gain these insights.

Additionally, the Solar API takes into account things like past local weather trends, energy costs, and more. Because of this, companies like solar installers can assess potential energy savings and how much sunlight a structure receives before physically visiting the area. As a result, this technology enables home owners to rapidly and easily install solar panels and supply the grid with sustainable energy.

We are committed to helping people adjust to the changing climate in addition to reducing emissions. With wildfires hurting so many people worldwide, we included an air quality layer in Google Maps last year to help users make informed decisions about where to travel and what to do. We developed our Air Quality API in the Google Maps Platform in response to the growing need for better air quality data worldwide.

The API provides accurate information on air quality, pollution heatmaps, and pollutant specifics for more than 100 nations worldwide.

The purpose of this API is to give a local and global index by validating and arranging several gigabytes of data every hour from various data sources, such as government monitoring stations, meteorological data, sensors, and satellites.

We utilise machine learning to anticipate different pollutants in that location at a specific moment by looking at live traffic information to understand congestion data and car volume in the area. This procedure enables businesses in the healthcare, automotive, transportation, and other industries to give their users precise and timely information about the quality of the air wherever they are.

Pollen-producing plants spread out and produce more as a result of rising temperatures and greenhouse gas emissions, which has an additional negative impact on people who suffer from seasonal allergies.

Our updated Pollen API displays the most prevalent allergen pollen information from over 65 nations. The API offers precise plant allergen information, heatmap visualisations, localised pollen count statistics, and practical advice for allergy sufferers to limit exposure. We employ machine learning to pinpoint individual pollen-producing plants in order to obtain this information. We can compute the seasonality and daily number of pollen grains and forecast how the pollen will move by combining local wind patterns.

These details give businesses that wish to assist individuals in making healthier decisions access to data-based insights. This pollen information, for instance, might be used by travel software to enhance planning for daily commutes or vacations.

With the help of these three new Google Maps Platform APIs, companies may gain access to thorough and current environmental data to create sustainable goods and aid people in coping with the effects of climate change. We're committed to creating tools that categorise environmental data and make this information relevant for businesses, cities, and partners so that we can all take action together.

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Source: Google


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