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Google DeepMind climate action lead Sims Witherspoon suggested a strategy dubbed the “Understand, Optimize, Accelerate” framework, outlining three steps for tackling climate change with AI.
Amid efforts by climate scientists and advocates to address environmental challenges, Google DeepMind climate action lead Sims Witherspoon sees potential in artificial intelligence (AI), emphasizing the importance of framing the solution through thoughtful questioning.
At the Wired Impact Conference in London, Witherspoon said she sees climate change as a scientific and technological challenge, expressing optimism about addressing it through artificial intelligence. Earlier this year, Google merged its Brain and DeepMind AI teams under a single banner called Google DeepMind.
Witherspoon suggested a strategy dubbed the “Understand, Optimize, Accelerate” framework, outlining three steps for tackling climate change with AI, which involve engaging with those affected, assessing AI’s applicability, and deploying a solution for impactful change.
DeepMind climate action lead at the Wired Impact Conference in London. Source: YouTube
Examining the path to deployment, Witherspoon observed that certain options become less viable due to existing regulatory conditions, infrastructure constraints, or other limitations and dependencies, such as restricted data availability or suitable partners.
Witherspoon stressed the importance of a collaborative approach, highlighting that while individual expertise is valuable, cooperation is crucial and necessitates the combined contributions of academics, regulatory bodies, corporations, non-governmental organizations and impacted communities.
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