IBM and Net Zero Atlantic partner to enhance clean energy transition for Indigenous communities

Today IBM announced the new members of its IBM Sustainability Accelerator program, with Halifax-based Net Zero Atlantic as one of the five organizations selected by the company to be part of its clean energy cohort.

IBM will work with Net Zero Atlantic, a not-for-profit company, to create an interactive digital tool that will help Indigenous communities in Atlantic Canada to understand how transitioning to a carbon-neutral energy system could impact their local economies and environments.

The tool will produce easy-to-understand visual results using IBM technology, including the IBM Environmental Intelligence Suite, an AI-powered SaaS solution that provides fact-based actionable intelligence to manage the economic impact of severe weather and climate change events, and IBM Cloud.

“Through this project, we aim to provide Indigenous communities in Atlantic Canada with additional evidence and authority to support their advocacy around clean energy policy and infrastructure buildout,” said Kathleen Mifflin, project manager, Net Zero Atlantic. “By collaborating with Indigenous partners, and with support from the IBM Sustainability Accelerator, we will help remove barriers that prevent a diversity of voices from actively participating in energy system planning and development. This kind of initiative is essential to ensuring our region’s energy system transition is equitable and inclusive.”

The IBM Sustainability Accelerator program applies IBM technologies, such as hybrid cloud and artificial intelligence, and an ecosystem of experts to enhance and scale projects focused on populations vulnerable to environmental threats, including climate change. In addition, IBM plans to donate US$30M worth of services by 2023 through the IBM Sustainability Accelerator program globally.

According to the International Energy Agency, energy is vital to Canada’s economy, making up about 10 per cent of the nation’s gross domestic product. Improving the rate of energy technology innovation will be critical to enable the deep decarbonization across sectors required to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

“The transition to clean energy in Canada is critical, and as a technology company we can play a key role in enabling organizations to turn sustainability ambition into action. We are incredibly proud Net Zero Atlantic has been chosen to be a part of the IBM Sustainability Accelerator program, and we’re excited to accelerate the impact this organization is making for Canada’s future,” said Jean-François Barsoum, senior innovation executive: research, innovation, environment and smart cities, IBM Canada.

The other four organizations selected to become part of the clean energy cohort of the program include:

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP): UNDP is working with IBM to increase access to sustainable, affordable and reliable energy in African countries.

Sustainable Energy for All: IBM and Sustainable Energy for All are coming together to build an intelligent model to project energy needs based on current and future human activity. This model will be designed to help to address key development challenges such as poor healthcare and lack of access to energy, and support the development of robust infrastructure planning, such as electrification plans.

Miyakojima City Government: The Miyakojima City Government is working with IBM to support the development of a renewable energy strategy, including a microgrid on Miyakojima Island, a community facing severe climate issues from typhoons in Japan. The city and IBM will use technologies like IBM Environmental Intelligence Suite weather data and IBM Cloud to model electricity demand and advise energy infrastructure development.

Environment Without Borders Foundation: Environment Without Borders Foundation’s partnership with IBM will be aimed at developing a platform to forecast, track, and communicate clean energy usage options in Egypt.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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Samira Balsara
Samira Balsara
Samira is a writer for IT World Canada. She is currently pursuing a journalism degree at Toronto Metropolitan University (formally known as Ryerson) and hopes to become a news anchor or write journalistic profiles. You can email her at [email protected]

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