Earth05, a Barcelona-based nonprofit, announced its launch at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, with a mission to combat the escalating global water crisis using artificial intelligence (AI). This initiative aims to address the pressing issue of water scarcity, which is predicted to worsen exponentially in the coming decades.
The nonprofit’s founder and president, Maria Dahrieh, revealed that Earth05’s approach involves integrating water, education, and AI across all initiatives. The goal is ambitious: to improve the lives of 500 million people by 2030 through collaborative efforts by what Dahrieh calls “brilliant minds.”
Water scarcity is a mounting concern globally, with approximately 2.2 billion people lacking access to safely managed drinking water. Projections by the United Nations indicate that by 2030, a 40% gap between global freshwater demand and supply could leave 1.6 billion people without access to safe drinking water.
Earth05’s strategy employs AI to analyze future systems, predicting water consumption and availability based on climate conditions. This cutting-edge technology opens avenues for optimizing delivery systems, detecting leakages, and enhancing irrigation practices. Pablo Ortiz, a climate and water scientist, highlighted AI’s potential in creating more efficient irrigation systems and analyzing crop suitability for specific regions.
Education is another key focus, with the possibility of using AI, including virtual reality headsets, to illustrate the severity of water scarcity in some regions. Earth05 believes that creating awareness through technology can instill a sense of urgency and mobilize collective action.
Notably, Earth05 aims to leverage AI to address inequities in water supply and demand, particularly in regions with imbalances such as the Middle East, Mexico, Brazil, India, China, and parts of the United States. Climate change exacerbates these challenges, contributing to longer droughts, reduced snowpack, and more severe flooding.
It’s crucial to acknowledge that AI itself consumes substantial amounts of water, adding a layer of complexity to the mission. Nonetheless, Earth05 is committed to finding innovative solutions, including accessing frozen or groundwater, to ensure a sustainable water future.
The Earth05 Co-creation Innovation Prize is now open for applications, inviting individuals to contribute transformative solutions for the world’s aquatic challenges. The nonprofit envisions a dual-focused mission: actively employing AI to address the water crisis while nurturing future-ready skills in the age of AI.
By encouraging community involvement, empowering underprivileged populations, and aligning efforts with Sustainable Development Goals, Earth05 aspires to make a tangible impact on water conservation and improve the lives of millions. As the global community grapples with the impending water crisis, Earth05 stands out as a beacon of hope, bringing together technology, education, and human collaboration to safeguard the planet’s most precious resource.