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Visualizing the Consequences of Climate Change Using Cycle-Consistent Adversarial Networks

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence

We present a project that aims to generate images that depict accurate, vivid, and personalized outcomes of climate change using Cycle-Consistent Adversarial Networks (CycleGANs). By training our CycleGAN model on street-view images of houses before and after extreme weather events (e.g. floods, forest fires, etc.), we learn a mapping that can then be applied to images of locations that have not yet experienced these events. This visual transformation is paired with climate model predictions to assess likelihood and type of climate-related events in the long term (50 years) in order to bring the future closer in the viewers mind. The eventual goal of our project is to enable individuals to make more informed choices about their climate future by creating a more visceral understanding of the effects of climate change, while maintaining scientific credibility by drawing on climate model projections.


Floods, fires, smog: AI delivers images of how climate change could affect your city

#artificialintelligence

The full brunt of the devastating effects of climate change is still a long way off. That's why a team at the Mila-Quebec Artificial Intelligence Institute, led by Professor Yoshua Bengio, wants to bring it home – right to your doorstep in fact. His team has developed a tool that makes it possible to visualize the effects of floods, wildfires and smog anywhere in the world. Their simulation does this by making use of a generative adversarial network (GAN), a type of machine-learning algorithm. GANs can also produce things such as deepfake images, which are digitally composed of millions of images to create realistic photos of something (or someone) new.


Deaths and money lost due to flooding has dropped since the 1950s despite climate change

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Flooding really was worse in the old days, according to a new study. The number of deaths and financial losses in Europe thanks to severe rainfall has dropped since the 1950s. Researchers found that the number of catastrophic floods each year during this period has remained constant despite the devastating effects of climate change. They suggest improving survival rates and lower flood costs are likely a result of people moving from the countryside to the cities where they are better protected. Modern houses are also more sturdily built than those of the '50s and flood defences have improved significantly over the past seventy years, they said.


ClimateGAN: Raising Climate Change Awareness by Generating Images of Floods

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence

Climate change is a major threat to humanity, and the actions required to prevent its catastrophic consequences include changes in both policy-making and individual behaviour. However, taking action requires understanding the effects of climate change, even though they may seem abstract and distant. Projecting the potential consequences of extreme climate events such as flooding in familiar places can help make the abstract impacts of climate change more concrete and encourage action. As part of a larger initiative to build a website that projects extreme climate events onto user-chosen photos, we present our solution to simulate photo-realistic floods on authentic images. To address this complex task in the absence of suitable training data, we propose ClimateGAN, a model that leverages both simulated and real data for unsupervised domain adaptation and conditional image generation. In this paper, we describe the details of our framework, thoroughly evaluate components of our architecture and demonstrate that our model is capable of robustly generating photo-realistic flooding.


Global warming made Paris floods far more likely, rapid analysis shows

Mashable

The water is still receding along the Seine and Loire Rivers in France, with cleanup beginning in parts of Bavaria, but scientists are already out with a study showing that global warming made the floods at the end of May and early June far more likely compared to a climate that had not warmed due to greenhouse gas emissions. The analysis, which is known as an extreme event "attribution study," found that the probability of three-day precipitation extremes in April through June increased by at least 40% in France overall due to climate change, with about an 80% increase in likelihood along the Seine River Basin and close to a 90% increase in the Loire River Basin. Last week, the River Seine burst its banks in Paris as water levels hit their highest levels in more than 30 years. The Louvre Museum was closed as a precaution, and valuable artwork moved from flood-prone parts of the building. Deadly flash-flooding also hit parts of Germany, the study noted.