Kevin Zhang’s opening remarks at the Tech for a Better Planet Symposium
Climate change and biodiversity loss are two of the biggest environmental challenges facing the global community today. The Asia Pacific enjoys some of the richest biodiversity and fastest economic growth in the world. But the region has seen a critical decline in biodiversity and an increase in the effects of climate change. The WWF’s living planet index reports a 45% decline in species since the 1970s. Equally, carbon emissions are on the rise. The region produced 33% of the global total of carbon dioxide in 2014. But if things continue as they are, it is on track to emit 45% by 2030.
Now more than ever, we need to re-assess our relationship with nature and move faster towards nature-positive and low-carbon growth models.
Technology can help improve the accessibility and efficiency of conservation efforts. We have worked with partners like IUCN, Rainforest Connection, governments, and the ICT sector to protect nature with technology. In the Philippines, Malaysia, and Indonesia, we’re applying acoustics technology and cloud AI to prevent illegal logging and poaching in rainforests.
Rainforest Connection CEO & Founder Topher White & a forest ranger deploying “Nature Guardians” in the Palawan Rainforest, Philippines
In Thailand and China, we’re working with IUCN to protect endangered species, including elephants and the Hainan gibbon.
Advances in technology can help us better understand and protect nature and reduce the impact of human activity on the planet. It can also help the ICT industry and other sectors move to low carbon models that use less energy to transmit, process, and store data. At the same time, it can make energy systems more efficient. For example, 5G uses just one-tenth of the energy that 4G uses per bit, but supports up to 30 times more traffic.
5G uses just one-tenth of the energy that 4G uses per bit, but supports up to 30 times more traffic.
Digital technologies are crucial to minimizing energy use and emissions in other industries. For example, digital technology helps improve energy networks, and data is a key resource in the Internet of Energy. Huawei’s Smart PV solution, for example, can cut power generation costs by up to 7% and slash carbon emissions. The solution has been deployed in various scenarios in 60 countries, including Singapore Changi Airport, the Sumatera Institute of Technology, and Bangkok Airport.
In the Asia Pacific, we will continue to deepen our collaboration with customers, governments, NGOs, enterprises, and ecosystem partners to achieve a low-carbon, green future.
Together, we can build a green and prosperous Asia Pacific.