Driven to solve the environment

6.19.2023//Opinion, Climate change

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Samuli Hänninen

Head of Vaisala Xweather

Everyone understands the value of data. Easy access to data has not only accelerated economic growth but has also largely made our societies more equal. However, there are areas where data is still lacking. When it comes to weather and environmental data, we've barely scratched the surface - and the opportunities here are endless.

Areas such as weather forecasting have seen major improvements, thanks to some of the most advanced computational models ever created. These models will only continue to improve with quantum computing and AI/ML. But beyond tomorrow’s weather forecast, the scope of weather and environmental data readily available to everyone is inadequate, especially when it comes to severe weather at the local scale.

Is environmental data part of our lives in the same way as all other data available to us? It is not, and it worries me. Climate change is a defining challenge for us, as well as for the coming generations. The only way to make a difference is by ensuring access to large quantities of accurate data. Only then we can create new, better solutions to existing problems and face the challenges the future holds.

At Vaisala Xweather, data is what we do

We receive an incredible amount of weather and environmental data from a variety of sources - millions of Vaisala-delivered highly accurate local sensors, multiple numerical weather prediction models, and satellites. From air quality to lightning, we have reliable data on what is happening in the atmosphere at any given moment - and it can help us make the right choices. From predicting and mitigating the effects of natural disasters to optimizing food and energy delivery processes and reducing waste, the opportunities are endless. And this is only the beginning. 

So let's think outside the box. Let's accelerate our efforts and utilize data to predict and protect the future of our planet. It was these thoughts that inspired us to build Xweather.

On September 28th in San Francisco, we shared our vision with customers and partners at the official Xweather launch event. As it happens, that date is also the birthday of Vilho Väisälä, who founded Vaisala in 1936.

We’ve been making strategic moves along the way, paving the way for Xweather: In 2019, we acquired professional weather services from Foreca. In early 2022, we acquired AerisWeather, the source for global weather data and mapping for business. With Vaisala’s expertise, these additional capabilities have been instrumental in building Xweather. 

On the Earth’s to-do list: Address the climate change challenge

Unmitigated climate change threatens our planet’s future. But we do not give in to doom and gloom. For close to a century, Vaisala has been helping people and companies across the globe to understand weather and climate, mitigate its volatile impacts, and adapt to severe conditions. We are the ones who identify the problem, measure it, quantify it, and solve it.

We are excited and honored to work with people who believe in the same things we do – that access to accurate data is the key to solving the challenge.

I strongly believe that great products are the reflection of the people that build them. Bright minds with passion and drive. Does it reach beyond the gross margin? Is it going to drive positive change in society and people?

The challenge with climate action is that weather and the environment are often abstract concepts to us. But once we can show concrete, measurable data behind the volatile environmental changes and the positive impact of our actions, we can start changing the way people think, behave, and act.

This is what Xweather is all about - providing the data and tools that help discover the absolute truth and solve the environment together. We don’t yet know all the possibilities our data can provide, but we’re looking forward to discovering it. Join us!

Samuli Hänninen

Head of Vaisala Xweather

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