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Building a global CO₂ emissions estimator using Machine Learning

How ELEKS’ Data Science team created an ML model to predict next year’s global carbon footprint
eleks Feasibility Study
emissions estimator
About the client

ELEKS is a global network of innovators pioneering new technologies to keep clients ahead of the curve. It invests heavily in internal R&D, yielding many promising discoveries and PoCs.

Industry: Environment
Location: Europe
Client since: 2020
Carbon footprint prediction with a convenient heatmap visualisation
A 20-year visual retrospective of global CO₂ emissions
The Situation
ELEKS wanted a visualisation and prediction tool that could allow it to track global CO₂ emissions

ELEKS has committed to two of the UN’s core Sustainable Development Goals; Goal 9: Industry, innovation and infrastructure and Goal 13: Climate action, to cement sustainability within its operations. The company dedicates a significant amount of its efforts to exploring climate-positive technology solutions.

ELEKS’ Data Science team resolved to build a model to predict the following year’s global CO₂ emissions using Machine Learning approaches. They aimed to explore the availability and global coverage of data, as well as modelling possibility. To visualise the obtained results, they created an interactive heat map on top of Streamlit, an open-source framework that allows Machine Learning and Data Science teams to develop and share data apps.

The solution
A Machine Learning-powered precision model that predicts global emissions for the coming year by location and fuel type

ELEKS’ Data Science team built a global CO₂ emission estimator, which can forecast emissions for the following year using natural Machine Learning approaches. Predictions are modelled from data taken from the World DataBank, which allows users to access various global datasets.

The team opted to include estimates for all four CO₂-related targets; total CO₂ emissions, solid fuel CO₂ emissions, liquid fuel CO₂ emissions, and gaseous fuel CO₂ emissions, using a top-down approach and estimating the component parts based on total CO₂ emissions.

Once they had the data, the experts filtered it to give the model the most accurate outcomes. Then, the team applied several strategies to reduce the dimension of the matrix and refine obtained results by removing collinear features.


They evaluated multiple models and algorithms to estimate the CO₂ emissions and carried out model validation to show those that worked best. Our experts then applied different strategies and techniques to improve the precision of results. They evaluated the model with the multirun holdout validation, calculating the variance and concluding on the robustness of the model.

Tools and methodology:
Dimensionality reduction and features influence
Matrix spectral analysis decision tree regressor, random forest regressor, gradient boosting regressor, ridge regressor, SVM regressor, and a multilayer perceptron
Model validation
Cross-validation, depending on the MAPE score and standard deviation on the folds, multirun validation
The Results
ELEKS has created a model that predicts future global emissions and gives a 20-year historical view for comparison

To visualise the research results, we have built an interactive heat map on top of Streamlit’s framework.

With the slider bar, a user can choose the year they’re interested in and see what the emission distribution is in countries across the globe. The map also serves as a simple tool for examining changes in CO₂ emissions throughout the past 20 years.

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The breadth of knowledge and understanding that ELEKS has within its walls allows us to leverage that expertise to make superior deliverables for our customers. When you work with ELEKS, you are working with the top 1% of the aptitude and engineering excellence of the whole country.

sam fleming
Sam Fleming
President, Fleming-AOD

Right from the start, we really liked ELEKS’ commitment and engagement. They came to us with their best people to try to understand our context, our business idea, and developed the first prototype with us. They were very professional and very customer oriented. I think, without ELEKS it probably would not have been possible to have such a successful product in such a short period of time.

Caroline Aumeran
Caroline Aumeran
Head of Product Development, appygas

ELEKS has been involved in the development of a number of our consumer-facing websites and mobile applications that allow our customers to easily track their shipments, get the information they need as well as stay in touch with us. We’ve appreciated the level of ELEKS’ expertise, responsiveness and attention to details.

Samer Awajan
Samer Awajan
CTO, Aramex