Information Systems for Environmental Sustainability

IT, Resource Productivity, Environmental Preservation, and the Fourth Industrial Revolution


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AI Should Incorporate Environmental Costs When Evaluating Effectiveness

Research manuscript published by Emma Strubell, Ananya Ganesh, and Andrew McCallumin in June 2019 and available on arxiv.org (https://arxiv.org/pdf/1906.02243.pdf) develops an AI environmental cost framework and assesses several algorithms. Popular NLP approaches exhibit wide variation in power, hours, and emissions. Recommendation:

Authors should report training time and sensitivity to hyperparameters. Our experiments suggest that it would be beneficial to directly compare different models to perform a cost-benefit (accuracy) analysis.


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U-M President Schlissel: “I am committed during my presidency to putting U-M on a trajectory towards carbon neutrality”

Citing regional collaboration and replicability, University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel commits to net carbon neutrality during his presidency. From the University Record article:

Speaking at his annual Leadership Breakfast, Schlissel said he would appoint a commission in the coming months to develop a plan that includes specific strategies and a timeline for the university to achieve carbon neutrality in a fiscally responsible manner.

“Throughout our history, we’ve always strived to impact society in profound ways. I’d like to figure out how to do this in partnership with Ann Arbor, and with other regional stakeholders, in a fashion that can be replicated by others all around our state and around the nation.”

 

 


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BBC: “Five things we have learned from the IPCC report”

Full BBC article about the IPCC special report can be found here.

There’s no doubt that this dense, science-heavy, 33-page summary is the most significant warning about the impact of climate change in 20 years.

“It is seriously alarming,” Amjad Abdulla, a lead author on one of the chapters from the Maldives, told BBC News.

“The small islands will be the first, but nobody can escape; it is quite clear.”

But while the warnings about the dangers of letting temperatures go beyond 1.5C are dire, the report says, surprisingly perhaps, that the world can keep below the limit.

“We face a really large challenge but it is not impossible to limit warming to 1.5 degrees,” said Dr Natalie Mahowald, an IPCC author