Huawei and IUCN Announce New Tech4Nature Project in Spain


Key Takeaways

  • Huawei and IUCN collaborate to analyze tourism’s effects on biodiversity, focusing on Spain’s Sant Llorenç del Munt i l’Obac Natural Park and Bonelli’s Eagle.
  • Utilizing cameras, GPS, and a cloud platform, the project observes wildlife behavioral changes due to tourism, aiming to share findings with the public.
  • Tech4Nature aims to replicate the study in Spanish protected areas and 300 global conservation sites, using technology and IUCN expertise.

Tech4Nature Project in Spain

Barcelona, Spain–Tech4Nature, an initiative by technology manufacturing company Huawei in partnership with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), has announced it has scheduled its latest project to study the impact of tourism on biodiversity in Spain.

In a report released on January 5, the two organizations stated having shortlisted the Sant Llorenç del Munt i l’Obac Natural Park in Barcelona Province to investigate how tourism and technology affect the park’s ecosystem and wildlife (especially the Bonelli’s eagle).

Scheduled to commence in February this year, Tech4Nature aims to use a “tech-based solution comprising cameras, GPS receivers, and a cloud platform” to monitor various wildlife species that have been observed to have undergone behavioral changes since the influx of mass tourism.

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“The project will help us to bring biodiversity conservation closer to the general public, as videos and other dissemination materials are planned,” said Ángel Miño, director of the Natural Park under Barcelona Provincial Council, in the release.

Global Conservation Efforts

The partnership (in collaboration with the University of Girona, Spain) hopes to utilize IUCN’s expertise and data in wildlife conservation and to use cutting-edge technology and AI to investigate the factors that affect the observable fall in the eagle population in the region. 

According to the release, Tech4Nature hopes to replicate the project in other protected areas of Spain and a further 300 protected areas (from among IUCN Green List countries) over the next three years. 

“We have the opportunity to take advantage of technological innovations and incorporate them into conservation measures for our ecosystems,” said Antonio Troya, Director of the IUCN Centre for Mediterranean Cooperation, in the release.

Huawei has previously partnered with various wildlife conservation organizations to help monitor wildlife and their respective threats in various regions worldwide. 

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Some of the notable technologies used include:

  • An acoustic technology powered by autonomous underwater microphones (and AI) that helps un-intrusively study whale behavior and the effects of noise pollution (with ORCA Ireland).
  • Solar-powered audio devices that can detect ambient sounds within a 7-km2 area, including the sounds of direct threats to wildlife, poachers’ gunshots, and the chainsaws of illegal loggers (with Rainforest Connection (RFCx)

What We Think

The collaboration between Huawei and IUCN through Tech4Nature to study tourism’s impact on biodiversity is a promising step. Employing innovative technology to monitor wildlife behavior and ecosystem changes due to mass tourism not only aids conservation efforts but also educates the public.

The initiative’s broader plan to replicate this study across protected areas worldwide showcases a commitment to leveraging technology for global conservation efforts, potentially fostering greater public awareness and engagement in biodiversity preservation.

This amalgamation of technology and conservation heralds a progressive approach towards preserving fragile ecosystems amidst increasing human activities.

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Aqil K
Aqil K
Aqil writes about travel, tourism, and covers the many aspects of the digital nomad lifestyle.


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