Responsible AI Innovation: Benefits and Strategies

Can Tech Companies Use Generative AI for Good?. As generative AI reshapes our world, the conversation has largely focused on its risks and downsides. However, Suzanne DiBianca, EVP and Chief Impact Officer at Salesforce, highlights the often-overlooked benefits that AI can bring to society and the fight against climate change.

Optimizing AI for Sustainability

Salesforce is driven by a mission to reduce emissions, accelerate climate solutions, and advance inclusivity. According to DiBianca, with proper guardrails and ethical development, AI can significantly aid in achieving these goals.

Key Strategies for Sustainable AI Development:

  1. Optimizing Models
    • Using smaller, domain-specific models tailored to their intended applications can be highly efficient. For example, Salesforce’s CodeGen 2.5 model enables code creation with natural language, performing as well as larger models.
  2. Employing Efficient Hardware
    • Leveraging the most efficient hardware available is crucial to reducing AI’s emissions.
  3. Prioritizing Low-Carbon Data Centers
    • Deploying AI in low-carbon data center regions and advocating for renewable energy installation are essential strategies.

Best Practices for Reducing Carbon Emissions in Software Development

Technologists must follow best practices such as identifying and shutting down underused systems, moving storage to more energy-efficient options, and developing energy-efficient software code.

Tracking Climate Impact

Improving the tracking of climate impact involves simplifying reporting processes and investing in emissions-tracking solutions. DiBianca advises starting with a clear climate action plan, conducting energy usage audits, prioritizing renewable energy, and collaborating with suppliers to collect emissions data.

Accelerating Climate Innovation Through AI Investments

DiBianca emphasizes that reducing global emissions and limiting warming to 1.5°C requires urgent innovation and investment. Salesforce invests in companies using AI to address climate challenges, such as PanoAI, which deploys AI to detect and respond to wildfires.

Driving Sustainability and Equity with AI

To ensure AI benefits all, it is essential to integrate sustainability into the business core. Salesforce’s Sustainable AI Policy Principles guide the company’s efforts in minimizing environmental impact and promoting climate innovation.

Upholding Responsibilities

As a technology leader, Salesforce is committed to shaping AI’s impact on the world responsibly. DiBianca stresses the importance of a dual commitment to the planet and global communities, fostering a legacy of responsible AI innovation for future generations.

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