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Digital transformation - Canada's new climate solution

By Denise Faguy

A new study says that through the vigilant use of sensors and drones, water and fertilizer use in agriculture could be slashed by 20 to 40%.

In a drive to meet its climate commitments, Canada is emphasizing the significance of digital transformation powered by connectivity. This revelation comes from a report commissioned by the Canadian Telecommunications Association and executed by Accenture.

While Canada has been keen on promoting renewable energy and clean tech solutions, it's evident that there's more to be done. Digitalization provides an avenue. By employing technology and data, Canadian industries can become more streamlined, waste less, and substantially decrease energy and fuel use.

Essential to this transformation is the robustness of modern wireless and wireline networks, enabling seamless integration of Internet of Things (IoT), AI, cloud computing, and more. Of course, everyone in agriculture knows that rural connectivity is an issue for many farmers across Canada, yet according to the study, it could benefit the most from connectivity.

Agriculture is one of three of Canada's prime industries looked at in the Accenture study: Agriculture, Oil & Gas, Mining:

  • Agriculture stands to benefit immensely. Through the vigilant use of sensors and drones, water and fertilizer use can be slashed by 20-40%.
  • Predictive maintenance in oil rigs, powered by sensors and drones, can curtail energy wastage. Digital twins, a digital replica of physical assets, can optimize operations, potentially cutting fuel wastage by 20%.
  • In the mining realm, technological connectivity can enhance tailings pond management by 25%. More importantly, it can lead to a staggering 90% drop in environmental safety incidents.

Robert Ghiz, of the Canadian Telecommunications Association, underscores the pivotal role of telecommunication networks in this green initiative. Investment in communication services lays the groundwork for harnessing data and digital tools to amplify productivity while ensuring ecological preservation.

But for this vision to be realized, there are essential pillars:

  1. Regulatory measures to spur investment in communication networks.
  2. Collaboration and innovation among solution providers.
  3. Industries embracing digital transformation, promoting data-sharing, and cultivating skilled workforces.
  4. Government incentives that encourage digitalization and a robust emissions measurement strategy.

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