Carbon Tracker

Carbon Tracker is an independent financial think-tank that has been in operation since 2007, working towards the UN goal of ending the construction of new coal plants by 2020. Using machine learning techniques trained on micro-satellite imagery, Carbon Tracker targets gas-powered energy plants to accurately estimate their emissions. Carbon Tracker also measures the power plants’ impact based on nearby infrastructure and local electricity use, and continuously monitors CO2 emittance with automatic updates. This AI innovation is especially useful for monitoring coal plants that do not give off easy-to-measure coal plumes, and for monitoring in jurisdictions that do not require emissions reporting. This innovative technology thus has an (unofficial) global reach, which is further enhanced by its strategy of reaching beyond regulators into local communities. Through their annual reports, Carbon Tracker engages governments, institutional investors and the fossil fuel industry, making significant contributions to the environmental and shareholder activist communities by providing data to support accurate carbon emissions estimates (which are much higher than indicated by official figures). In the future, Carbon Tracker could help inform full-cost pricing of carbon tax and pinpoint plants directly responsible for over-emitting. 

Peters, W., Jacobson, A.R., Sweeney, C., Andrews, A.E., Conway, T.J., Masarie, K., Miller, J.B., Bruhwiler, L.M., Pétron, G., Hirsch, A.I. and Worthy, D.E., 2007. “An atmospheric perspective on North American carbon dioxide exchange: CarbonTracker“.


Artificial Intelligence, Climate Change, Data, Ecological Monitoring, Industry/Natural Commodities, Monitoring, Pollution, Regulation, Visual Technologies