In an innovative collaboration, ABB Robotics has joined forces with Junglekeepers, a U.S. non-profit organization, to utilize their advanced robot, YuMi, in the reforestation efforts of the Amazon. A recent press release by ABB highlights how this cutting-edge machine is automating planting tasks within a jungle laboratory, streamlining the process and enabling Junglekeepers’ volunteers to concentrate on more impactful work.

Sami Atiya, President of ABB Robotics and Discrete Automation, emphasized the significance of this partnership, stating, “ABB’s collaboration with Junglekeepers showcases the pivotal role of robotics and Cloud technology in combating deforestation, one of the major contributors to climate change.” He further added, “Our pilot program featuring the world’s most remote robot is helping automate highly repetitive tasks, freeing up rangers to undertake more important work in the rainforest and aiding in the conservation of their land.”

The YuMi robot has been deployed to a remote area of the Peruvian Amazon, specifically a jungle lab, where it diligently carries out tasks such as digging holes in the soil, planting seeds, compacting the soil, and marking the planted area with color-coded tags. Thanks to YuMi’s capabilities, an area equivalent to two soccer fields can be reforested on a daily basis. Moshin Kazmi, Co-Founder of Junglekeepers, emphasized the urgency of the situation, stating, “As of right now, we have lost 20 percent of the total area of the Amazon rainforest. Without utilizing technology today, conservation efforts would come to a standstill.”

Kazmi further added, “Having YuMi at our base is a great way to introduce our rangers to new methods. It accelerates and expands our operations, advancing our mission.” The importance of combining technology, science, and local knowledge to preserve the Amazon was echoed by Dennis del Castillo Torres, Director of Forest Management Research at the Peruvian Amazon Research Institute, who stated, “The Amazon is in danger. We must bring together all these elements to make a difference.”

He emphasized the significance of integrating high technology and conservation, highlighting the potential of various technologies, including the YuMi robot, to expedite reforestation in areas experiencing high deforestation rates. Since 1985, an estimated area larger than France, the United Kingdom, and Belgium combined—more than 336,000 mi² (870,000 km²)—has been devastated in the Amazon rainforest.

By leveraging the power of robotics and technological advancements, alongside local expertise, it is hoped that the combined efforts of organizations like ABB Robotics and Junglekeepers can contribute to the preservation and revitalization of the Amazon rainforest before it’s too late.

By Impact Lab