Does the sanity of world’s beautiful lakes lie in the virtual grip of Artificial Intelligence?

by January 3, 2019 0 comments

Artificial Intelligence

The earth is referred as a water planet which is covered with maximum ratio of water. Every water body contents some or the other requirement clutching its own essence. Talking about essence of water bodies, what if we will not be able to preserve its sanity? Here we are specifically vocalizing the problem of “Algae Blossom” in lakes, rivers, streams or seas around the world.

Lakes that are valued as water sources useful for fishing, water transport, recreation or tourism, normally tend to appear as picturesque blue but due to algae blossom its beauty fades away. For example, Lake Atitlan in Guatemala provides clean drinking water to the residents who live around its borders and is also a major tourist attraction. But now the lake is enveloped in a slim foiling of green algae.

The algae blooms in Guatemala’s lake Atitlan first appeared in 2009 which shocked the residents of that area.

Africa Flores, a native of Guatemala and research scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville quoted – “Now it’s very frequent… the blooms are now appearing every year, the largest occurred in 2009. It was so visible that NASA’s Terra satellite captured images of the phenomenon from space.”

To curb the issue, certain grantees have been assigned who have received the grants to develop AI centric programs and campaign that may preserve the attraction of the lake, natural environment and biodiversity of ecosystem.

Reportedly, Flores and local associates in Guatemala settled to graph the blooms over the following years and creating new artificial intelligence that will support locals better forecast algae blossoms.

Delving deep into the microbiology, we can cite that, the unusual advent of algae blooms, also termed as cyanobacteria, cultivate conveniently when substances like nitrogen and phosphorus concentrate in freshwater.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration depends on the merger of ground and satellite reports, to forecast harmful blooms off the coasts of Texas and Florida. Flores said that there is no technological infrastructure in Guatemala to warn authorities about approaching algae bloom. Also she is hopeful that new technology can support local NGOs and environment concerned authorities to target the source of the contamination problem. To dig out the exact place of problem, where and how fiercely untreated sewage and agricultural waste influence lake and bulges to blooms, is troublesome.

Additionally, Flores quoted – “When we identify key variables that continue to algae bloom formation, there is a starting point to take action.”


How is AI helpful in solving algae blooms?

•  Usage of AI rather than humans to identify the bloom’s root may ease the collection of facts and data and will make it cheaper and faster and more easy for sharing.

•  Further development in AI can achieve other viable goals such as monitoring growing agricultural practices in Africa and mapping destructive and expired dams.

•  AI can also be used in tracking animal population change and quickly analysing information from visual surveys and acoustic monitoring.

Microsoft’s chief environmental office Lucas Joppa said in a press release – “Human ingenuity, especially when paired with the speed, power and scale that AI brings, is our best bet for crafting a better future for our planet and everyone on it.”

Global aqua ecosystem is at risk of developing similar problems due to irresponsible human activities and negligence. Therefore, it is the high time to collaborate with artificial intelligence, because Yes! The virtue of AI technology can help in getting a hold onto real and original essence of lakes and water biodiversity.

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