Google to help map global methane emissions from space

New Delhi:Google has announced a partnership with the non-profit Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) to map methane pollution and oil and gas infrastructure from space.

The Environmental Defense Fund’s satellite, MethaneSAT, will soon orbit the Earth to collect satellite data.

This data, combined with Google’s AI and infrastructure mapping, will create a better understanding for how to mitigate methane emissions, the tech giant said in a statement.

The year 2023 was the hottest year on record, and the last 10 years have been the hottest years since 1850.

“We are announcing a partnership with EDF that combines our science and technology to reduce methane emissions. This is one of the most powerful, short-term actions we can take to reduce warming,” said Yael Maguire, VP and General Manager, Geo Developer & Sustainability, Google.

Methane from human sources is responsible for about 30 per cent of global warming today, and a big contributor of methane in the atmosphere comes from extracting fossil fuels, like oil and gas, from the Earth.

By powering methane detection algorithms with Cloud computing and applying AI to satellite imagery to identify oil and gas infrastructure around the world, the goal is to help EDF quantify and trace methane emissions to their source.

“With this information, energy companies, researchers and the public sector can take action to reduce emissions from oil and gas infrastructure faster and more effectively,” said Google.

Launching in early March on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, MethaneSAT will orbit the Earth 15 times a day at an altitude of over 350 miles.

It will measure methane levels in the top oil and gas regions in the world for regular analysis.

To help researchers and organisations, the insights will be available later this year on MethaneSAT’s website and accessible through Google Earth Engine.

IANS

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