Siemens Australia is collaborating with Swinburne University of Technology in a cross-country project designed to explore the role of AI in achieving Net Zero.
The project is expected to enable utility providers, regulators, local governments, and businesses to incorporate ethical principles into AI governance for a seamless transition to net zero.
Outcomes will include comprehensive guidelines for responsible AI adoption, and will foster ethical practices within the energy industry, whilst helping accelerate the adoption of renewable energy for achieving net zero targets.
Led by Swinburne and funded by the Australian Department for Foreign Affairs and Trade under the Australia-India Cyber and Critical Technology Partnership (AICCTP) the project title is Responsible AI for Net Zero – An Australia and India Collaborative Approach towards Practice, Governance and Ethics in Energy Futures.
Siemens Australia and New Zealand CEO Peter Halliday said, “We’re at a pivotal moment of time where AI is impacting every aspect of our lives. Net zero is a tremendous target and we need to consider how we embrace AI to accelerate the changes needed across industry, infrastructure and energy sectors to meet challenging climate targets. Innovation through digitalisation is the key to addressing all these challenges, especially if Australia aims to reduce global emissions beyond the 1 per cent we’re responsible for.”
“Our local partnerships with industry, government and academia are as important as our technological prowess and have enabled us to grow in Australia over the last 150 years. We’re proud of our ongoing partnership with Swinburne and I look forward to the outcomes of this study.”
Associate professor Mehdi Seyedmahmoudian, director of the Siemens Swinburne Energy Transition Hub welcomed the industry partnership saying, “While we are developing the AI-driven tools within advanced energy systems, it becomes paramount to ensure the responsible and ethical use of data and the cutting-edge algorithms in our future systems. This project showcases how we collaborate with other leading institutions and industries, to ensure we provide smarter and safer energy systems for our communities.”
Siemens Australia Communications and Government Affairs Siemens Press Release Page 2/2 The project focuses on three key pillars:
1. establishing current ethical principles for AI adoption in the energy sector
2. identifying key ethical issues shaping the use of AI in the development of smart energy systems for achieving Net Zero
3. recommending comprehensive guidelines for translating ethical principles into AI energy governance
Jose Moreira, the regional head for grid software at Siemens Australia and New Zealand said, “As industry leaders, we have a responsibility to help shape the impact of AI on the energy industry and help set in place the frameworks and guidelines required for future. A robust energy sector needs equally progressive and dynamic thinking and collaboration to keep ahead of change. I look forward to working closely with all the partners on this significant project.”
Other collaborators on the project include Indian Institute of Technology Palakkad (IIT Palakkad), Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras) and Maxbyte Technologies Singapore.
Professor Prem Prakash Jayaraman, Director of Swinburne’s Factory of the Future and Digital Innovation Lab said, “AI is key in delivering Net Zero by supporting sustainable and green energy systems. This project is particularly important as it takes a global approach bringing together industries, government and university to tackle the challenge of using AI responsibly to deliver our Net Zero Commitments.”
Siemens’ history in AI spans more than three decades. More recently in Victoria, Siemens worked with local company Automation Innovation to use AI and robotics to come up with a solution for the glass bottling industry, which produces around 700 billion bottles each year. The innovation has the potential to reduce raw materials usage by about 700,000 tonnes of annually, which has enormous net zero benefits.