Software Development

Google’s latest APIs focus on tackling climate change and its effects

In an effort to strengthen its commitment to environmental sustainability, Google announced the launch of a suite of new sustainability APIs at Next Google Cloud event.

The new APIs provide developers with real-time information on solar potential, air quality and pollen levels, with the aim of collectively reducing carbon emissions by 1 gigatonne per year by 2030.

One of the highlights is the Solar API, an evolution of Google’s 2015 Sunroof project. This initiative used location, sunlight and navigation data to estimate the energy production of solar panels installed on rooftops around the world.

Building on this foundation, Solar API uses advanced AI models and modern mapping techniques to analyze roof angles, slopes, neighboring tree shade, and historical weather data. This allows for accurate forecasts of solar energy production without the need for on-site inspections, benefiting both homeowners and solar installation companies.

Yael Maguire, vice president and general manager of Geo Sustainability at Google, said: “The demand for solar energy has grown significantly in recent years… we saw many opportunities to bring this information and technology to businesses around the world. entire. »

Expanding on its environmental initiatives, Google is also expanding the Air Quality layer into a dedicated API.

The Air Quality API, which initially proved crucial during the 2021 California wildfires, aggregates data from a variety of sources, including government monitoring stations, weather data, sensors and satellites.

By consolidating this vital information, the Air Quality API provides local and universal air quality indices that take into account factors such as traffic conditions and vehicle volume. Industries such as healthcare, automotive, and transportation can leverage this API to provide users with accurate and timely air quality information, improving public health awareness and safety.

Additionally, Google’s evolution of the pollen tracking Maps layer into a full API addresses the effects of climate change on pollen production.

The Pollen API tracks the seasonal release of pollen-producing plants in more than 65 countries, taking into account local wind patterns and annual trends. This data provides users with detailed allergen information, local pollen count data, and heat maps showing areas with the highest pollen levels.

Travel planning apps, among others, will be able to use the Pollen API to help users make informed decisions about their daily trips, vacations and more.

The Sustainability API Suite reinforces Google’s commitment to combining technological innovation and environmental responsibility. Developers will be able to access these APIs starting August 29, 2023.

(Photo by Pierre Ross on Unsplash)

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  • Ryan Davies

    Ryan is a senior editor at TechForge Media with over a decade of experience covering the latest technology and interviewing leading industry figures. He can often be spotted at tech conferences with a strong coffee in one hand and a laptop in the other. If he’s a geek, he’s probably interested. Find him on Twitter (@Gadget_Ry) or Mastodon (@[email protected])

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Keywords: Air quality API, climate change, cloud next, coding, development, environment, google, pollen API, programming, solar API, sustainability

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