RIYADH: International Business Machines Corp. will soon introduce remote-sensing technology in Saudi Arabia to track and measure carbon dioxide emissions and footprint, disclosed a top company official.
Speaking on the sidelines of the Global AI Summit in Riyadh, IBM’s chief technology officer for the Middle East and North Africa, Anthony Butler, told Arab News that the company will deploy artificial intelligence to achieve the Kingdom’s sustainability goals.
The American tech giant is partnering with the Saudi Authority for Data and Artificial Intelligence and the Ministry of Energy in driving AI in the industrial sector using some of their emerging technologies.
“Broadly, what we’ll be focusing on initially will be how we use artificial intelligence to address some of the challenges around sustainability,” Butler said.
Using multiple satellites and imaging technologies, the company will train an AI model to recognize and pinpoint various gas forms across the country. Doing so will help with earlier and better visibility of the problem, which is impossible with conventional measurement approaches.
Taking measurements of carbon emissions and installing sensors are costly, and sending people to monitor physically can also be time-consuming and expensive, he said.
Satellite technology, on the other hand, can identify hotspots in terms of greenhouse gas emissions in a city.
“Saudi Arabia has unique weather, and we will be testing the technology for the first time in these conditions. But we’re confident it will deliver value,” he added.
The technology, according to Butler, has been tested and even published in peer-reviewed journals. However, it will be introduced in the region for the first time.
IBM has delivered a lot of value to the oil and gas industry worldwide through its partnerships and its technology, said Butler.
He added that the company uses AI and other technologies to develop new materials that can store carbon dioxide, a paramount concern for the global oil and gas industry.
During US President Joe Biden’s visit to the Kingdom in July, IBM partnered with the Saudi information technology authority and committed to training 100,000 Saudis in advanced technologies, including AI.