Empower sustainable decision-making with AI and analytics

Dr Lee Eccleshare
13 November, 23

Despite the oceans covering 70% of our planet, humanity has only explored a mere 5% of those waters. Technology has allowed us to map out the deep expanse, but accessing certain depths remains a challenge to overcome.

It’s a similar story with the deep web.

Making up roughly 90% of the internet, the deep web holds an incomprehensible wealth of knowledge that’s rapidly expanding. However, just like the great depths of the oceans, accessing the far corners of this network can be tricky.

What’s more alarming though, is how many business-critical decisions are made based on information sourced from just 4% of the total internet known as the ‘surface web’, which is the part accessed through standard web browsing. When it comes to addressing urgent and transformational change such as the transition to net zero, living sustainably and the age of AI, the last thing businesses need is to be restricted by their inherent knowledge.

Yet, that’s the exact reality we find ourselves in.

The clock is ticking

Organisations are under pressure from governmental bodies around the world to take action.

The International Energy Agency emphasises the need for innovation in clean energy technologies to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050. The EU recently raised its legally binding renewable energy target for 2030. The UK is legally required to have reduced its greenhouse gas emissions to achieve net zero by 2050. And the U.S. Senate’s approval of the Inflation Reduction Act focuses on reducing inflation and combating climate change through investments in clean energy and carbon capture.

In short, companies have serious decisions to make – and quickly. However, the knowledge upon which to base these decisions is too often limited to the people in the room at the time.

And even then, that pool of knowledge is but a mere fraction of what’s available in the deep web. So, is it enough to simply say, ‘we only know what we know’? Surely it’s up to us to simply know more.

Businesses are turning to technology to help them prepare for the race to net zero. And it’s time to unlock the 90% of information currently inaccessible to decision-makers. 

Defining your roadmap

High on the agenda for companies looking to establish and sharpen their net zero initiatives are business utilities. But these roadmaps are inherently long – we’re talking decades – which means the decisions taken today must also account for future developments. Take the energy sector for example, which has net zero goals set for 2050.

When choosing technology to underpin a transformational change of this nature, there are two conflicting forces: businesses often want to go for the ‘next best thing’ that will deliver immediate efficiency, but ultimately, the chosen solution needs to be future-proof.

The International Energy Agency reports a substantial investment of $1.2 trillion is required to meet supply chain targets for clean energy technology. For businesses to feel confident in where they’re allocating their investments, they ultimately need as much information as possible to be able to make an informed decision.

This is where artificial intelligence (AI) comes into play.

Unlocking the deep web

In order to make these business-critical decisions around net zero, organisations need access to the right information.

This means accessing data that is closely related to their unique situation, from reliable sources, that will ultimately deliver the most useful guidance. 

With new, emerging applications, AI has the capacity to do just that.

When integrated into a market intelligence platform, for example, AI can be used to help identify the next wave of technology to support net zero initiatives or help optimise existing investments. Think of being able to automatically monitor millions of documents related to sustainability and net zero every week, have the relevant signals identified, summarised and analysed, distilled into relevant insights and delivered to your desk.

Traditional methods of collecting and analysing data for sustainability initiatives are often labour-intensive and time-consuming. AI-powered platforms, on the other hand, offer a revolutionary approach by providing a deeper and more comprehensive overview of discussions, technology product development, and overall market sentiment.

This data-driven approach not only unlocks greater knowledge, but also instils a sense of confidence in decision makers. They can benchmark themselves against other industries, or their competitors, not only with how they are limiting their carbon emissions outputs, but also how they can communicate progress around sustainability.

Without a doubt, advanced analytics and AI have become vital tools for organisations striving to establish robust sustainability programs. By providing deeper insights, navigating the innovation landscape, and assisting in long-term decision-making, AI platforms are empowering businesses to lead the way in creating a sustainable future.

Humanity’s exploration of the seven seas has only just begun. However, this doesn’t have to be the case with digital information. By integrating AI into market intelligence, we can start to embed the roots of knowledge within the deep web, rather than relying on that found at the surface, to better inform and shape business-critical decisions.

Related posts


Latest posts