USA: WattTime has announced a new project, funded by a $1.7 million grant from Google.org, which will use a global network of satellites to measure carbon emissions from all large power plants worldwide and render the information public. WattTime and a group of other collaborating environmental nonprofits chosen through the Google AI Impact Challenge aim to use the resulting data both to hold polluting plants accountable to environmental standards, as well as to enable advanced new emissions reduction technologies.
WattTime previously pioneered solutions such as Automated Emissions Reduction (AER), which leverages past, present, and forecasted power grid emissions data and machine learning algorithms to allow smart devices to adjust the timing of their energy use to sync with clean energy and avoid dirty energy. The organization is spearheading this new endeavor to develop a global continuous emissions monitoring system that is more granular, accurate, and comprehensive than anything that has existed before.
“We received thousands of applications to the Google AI Impact Challenge and are excited to be supporting WattTime with funding and expertise from Google,” said Jacquelline Fuller, president of Google.org. “AI is at a nascent stage when it comes to the value it can have for the social impact sector, and we look forward to seeing the outcomes of this work and considering where there is potential for us to do even more.”
Joining WattTime in the collaboration are nonprofits Carbon Tracker, a financial think tank that analyzes the economic impacts of the energy transition and the first organization to pioneer satellite-based power plant monitoring; and World Resources Institute (WRI), a global research organization working to secure a more sustainable future and who maintains the most comprehensive Global Database of Power Plants in existence today.