Green Horizons

Given the rapid industrialization that has occurred within the past few centuries in China, many of its cities are facing immense environmental challenges, including high air pollution. Given the topography of the country, some of its cities lie within smog-trapping mountain ranges, exacerbating the problem. In partnership with the Beijing Environmental Bureau, IBM China launched the Green Horizons initiative in 2014 in order to provide solutions to cities in order to better manage their air pollution. Green Horizons focuses on the cognitive Internet of Things, wherein computing systems are fed streams of real-time air quality data and analyzed by machine learning algorithms. The Internet of Things plays a large role in feeding data into the algorithms from monitoring stations on the ground. Both visual maps of pollutant source and dispersion, as well as pollution forecasts, are rendered from such cognitive computing and IoT data acquisition. Forecasts and visuals are based on PM2.5 concentration and provide readings for up to 10 days in the future, 72 hours ahead of time. Green Horizons is also looking to provide cities with renewable energy forecasting, which would help planners make decisions as they transition from a carbon-based energy society. While Green Horizons provides a wide range of tools to municipalities, it is unclear whether the forecasts and visuals are provided to the public, who could greatly benefit from receiving these from a health perspective.

Green Horizons. (n.d.). Retrieved from


Artificial Intelligence, Data, Ecological Monitoring, Monitoring, Pollution