Data and international collaboration critical to combating climate-related risks

Oleh Planet

Satellite data provider Planet highlighted the importance of AI - that is increasingly weaved into its solutions - to provide actionable insights for governments to increase their policy impact.

Planet CEO and Co-Founder Will Marshall giving his keynote presentation at the Planet On The Road event on June 12, in Washington D.C., USA. Image: Planet.

“The work to combat climate change requires commercial innovation, scientific clarity, and international collaboration,” reported an article in Planet Blog which sums up the takeaways from the Planet On The Road event on June 12, in Washington D.C., USA. 

At the event, Planet’s CEO and Co-Founder, Will Marshall, highlighted that the Planet data has been cited in more than 3,500 scientific papers and used by 25 government agencies under a National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) programme. 

Other government, non-profit and academic speakers in climate and indigenous action also discussed different ways they are using Earth Observation and satellite data to make informed decisions in sustainability, science, climate and development.  

For example, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) uses the Planet data for its blue carbon explorer app to help governments identify key blue areas for restoration and protection.  

Robust data and AI to support international collaborations 


Planet aligns with governments by providing actionable data and insights for initiatives and projects, the increasing role of artificial intelligence (AI) to innovatively solve modern problems through the newly launched Planet Insights Platform, and supports critical international and inter-industry collaborations in the Asia-Pacific region. 


Introducing AI to the platform elevates access to the data, said Planet Senior Vice President of Software Engineering, Troy Toman, at the event. 


“AI gives us a way to take this data and turn it into insights more quickly, it’s not magic though. We cannot solve the customer problem in totality. The partner applications help bring the deep domain expertise,” he added. 


Working with customers and partners to complement each other’s capabilities enables Planet to push to capture even more of the Earth Observation ecosystem - what Planet termed as “broad area management” which allows governments and businesses around the world to monitor large areas and take action. 

Governments adopt broad area management to improve efficiency 


By combining analysis-ready Earth data with administrative datasets and public imagery, governments can see detailed changes across dispersed areas, prioritize issues, and accelerate decisions. 


How do governments save time with Planet data? 

  • Automate change detection: Use automated road and building change detection to identify new developments on a weekly basis. 

  • Pre-plan regular site inspections: Verify compliance and reduce total onsite time before regular inspections. 

  • Reduce manual processing and data analysis bottlenecks: Query, process, visualise, and analyse high volumes of Earth data and generate relevant statistics within seconds using the Planet Insights Platform. 

  • Accelerate issue resolution: Use near-daily imagery to identify when changes occurred and reduce onsite investigation time. 

  • Keep internal and public-facing dashboards up to date: Deliver more accurate and timely information to diverse audiences. 


As agencies implement more digital transformation initiatives, Planet can help accelerate processes and free up time for more complex tasks that require creativity, judgment, and problem-solving skills. 

Satellite remote sensing and AI for Asia’s blue carbon economy 


Satellite remote sensing data, used in conjunction with AI, can help governments and private organisations efficiently locate and map blue carbon sinks within coastal communities, thus helping to manage carbon accounting and planning. 


Blue carbon refers to the carbon dioxide stored in the world’s ocean and coastal ecosystems, such as mangroves, saltmarshes, and seagrass. 


With many coastal communities, the Asia-Pacific region holds significant untapped blue carbon economy potential. Beyond protecting people's livelihoods, blue carbon ecosystems can also be utilised for climate solutions and carbon reporting.  


Traditional means, such as field surveys and drones, that were used to identify and map blue carbon sinks are time, labour and cost-intensive, thereby making it challenging to scale up to cover larger coastal zones.  


Tapping on Planet’s satellite data, the local government in Japan’s Kamiamakusa City is already leveraging remote sensing technology and capabilities to estimate the amount of blue carbon that the city possesses for carbon sequestering. 


“Through the work of our partners and our internal software development teams, algorithms can quickly locate what is invisible to the naked eye. With a single reference image, we can locate objects of interest in minutes, not hours or days like traditional machine learning models.” said Ashley Johnson, President and CFO, Planet 


She added, “We believe our job is to remove blindspots and give you insights that are multidimensional and multi-domain to maximise the impact of the actions you take.” 


Planet Insights Platform can help governments make more informed decisions to drive effective policy. Find out how governments can increase policy impact with the platform.