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December, 2020

The Good News #35

The stockings are hung by the chimney with care, waiting for good news to feel a little less rare… Keep on scrolling to catch up on some of our favourite news stories from the past week.

AI software helping the construction industry

Computer scientists at the University of the West of England (UWE Bristol) are developing software that uses artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to help construction companies reduce the amount of embodied carbon in building and infrastructure projects.

The two-year project, which began in November is led by UWE Bristol’s Big Data Laboratory, in collaboration with Winvic Construction and Costain. The team are also working with Edgetrix, a start-up that specialises in cloud and AI solutions. Innovate UK, the UK’s first innovation agency, that works with organisations to drive science and technology developments that will grow the UK economy, is funding the £800,000 project.

Embodied carbon is the amount of energy consumed during a project’s construction phrase. Construction organisations have caps on the amount of C02 their projects emit – this is in line with the UK government’s plan to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Because of the cap, when planning a building project, organisations need to estimate the amount of embodied carbon that will be used and attempt to reduce it by using alternative materials that have a lower carbon footprint. Of course, this can be a time-consuming process. The new software currently in development at UWE Bristol will use machine learning and AI to calculate the amount of embodied carbon, saving precious time and man-hours.

Initially, the project will use Winvic and Costain’s commercial premises as test sites for the software. The plan is then to roll out the software to building designers and others working in the construction industry.

Construction plan with tape measure

Hartlepool Giving Tree

If the thought of Christmas is still leaving you feeling distinctly Grinch-like we’ve found the perfect solution, to warm the coldest of hearts. The Hartlepool Giving Tree was created to give Christmas gifts to as many children and young adults as possible.

So how does it work? Visit the Hartlepool Giving Tree website and select one of the gift tags on the home page, that show which gift each child would like to receive. You then should buy the present selected either from a recommended retailer or one of your choice and send it to the shipping address provided.

Due to the Hartlepool Giving Tree’s success the campaign has been extended and is now reaching out to charities UK wide with its donations

Many of those who receive gifts from the giving tree have escaped domestic violence – this means they have often been forced to flee their homes quickly and leave all their possessions behind.

The Workbrands team has already sent ordered some presents to be sent to the Hartlepool giving tree and can report browsing slime and Sylvanian families is even more fun when you know it’s for an amazing cause.

Hartlepool Giving Tree

Why stop there? Head over to our blog to read the rest of our Good News series.