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AI Helps Shrink Amazon Dams' Greenhouse Gas Emissions


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The Santo Antnio hydropower dam in the Brazilian Amazon.

A Cornell University-led team has developed a computational model that uses artificial intelligence to find the most promising configurations of dam sites in the Amazon basin..

Credit: Cornell Chronicle

A model developed by a Cornell University (CU)-led team of researchers uses artificial intelligence (AI) to find the most promising configurations of dam sites to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the Amazon basin, and could eventually be used to gauge environmental impacts of other power sources in other regions.

Using the AI model, the researchers can identify the combination of dams that would produce the lowest amounts of greenhouse gases for a given energy output target.

The analysis found that dams built at high elevations tend to have lower greenhouse gas emissions per unit of power output than dams in the lowlands.

Said CU’s Alex Flecker, “You have to consider the tradeoffs between generating hydropower and the environmental impact, so society can make the decisions it deems acceptable."

From Cornell Chronicle (NY)
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Abstracts Copyright © 2019 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


 

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