An Australian startup has created drones to help in the fight against climate change. Loaded with seeds protected by nutritious envelopes, they are capable of sowing up to 40,000 trees per day.
Fighting climate change requires both reducing greenhouse gas emissions and planting trees to sequester carbon. Australian startup AirSeed brings a technological solution to reforestation thanks to an army of drones assisted by artificial intelligence .
The firm makes a first flight to analyze the terrain and determine the appropriate species. A drone is then loaded with balls each containing a seed, and each ball is dropped individually at a specific location.
It sows up to two seeds per second and records the GPS coordinates of each, allowing teams to assess the germination rate afterwards. A single drone is capable of planting 40,000 trees a day with two people to charge and program the device, which flies autonomously. According to the firm, this method is 25 times faster and 80% cheaper than manual techniques.
100 million trees will be planted by 2024
In addition to having created drones specially designed to transport and release seeds, AirSeed Technologies has taken particular care in the composition of the balls. They are composed of waste organic matter and protect the seeds from the onslaught of birds, insects and rodents , while providing them with nutrients and probiotics.
The firm also makes sure to choose local varieties to help restore biodiversity and not create a monoculture solely intended for carbon sequestration. AirSeed Technologies has ambitious plans to plant 100 million trees by 2024.