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Generative AI to Help Nigeria’s Fight Against Climate Change

Generative artificial intelligence has the potential to help Nigeria’s fight against climate change, the General Manager for IBM Africa Growth Markets, Julia Carvalho said.

Carvalho noted that data was a key component of the fight against climate change, but lamented the challenges with accessing data in Nigeria, which had hindered the country’s ability to effectively prepare against the effects of climate change such as flooding.

‘’Data unavailability, storage, and reliability ensure that research, analysis, forecast, and economic predictions over a specific area of interest become a daunting task,’’ she added.

Carvalho said, “Fortunately, advances in generative artificial intelligence have the potential to make a difference. Its ability to employ machine learning algorithms and its capacity to automate data processing – at speed and scale – offers the prospect of humanity getting better insights into the climate challenge, helping to ensure we make better-informed decisions.”

She noted that Nigeria was witnessing a troubling frequency of climate-change-related disasters with 662 deaths, 3,174 injuries, 2.5 million displacements, and 200,000 homes destroyed by flooding recorded in 2022 alone.

Expanding on how generative AI will help the country, she said, “Generative AI is a hugely transformative technology that has the potential to raise humanity’s game against climate change, while at the same time enhancing productivity, sustainably and securely.

“The insights it’s already beginning to deliver are helping shape environmental policies, supported by robust data analytics. Organisations are also starting to reap the benefits and better understand their operations, identify decarbonisation opportunities, and in the process create a robust roadmap to net zero.”

She added that obstacles, such as unstructured or siloed data, complex regulations, and stringent net zero obligations could all be addressed with generative AI.

She, however, noted that to ensure the creation of robust and trustworthy AI tools it was essential for businesses, governments, and regulators to work with technology partners with a proven track record of developing and implementing scalable generative AI systems.

Source : Punch