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This New AI Forensic Tool is Fighting Illegal Logging

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Channel: Seeker
Categories: Environmental   |   Science   |   Technology  
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At about $150 billion per year, the illegal logging trade is the most profitable environmental crime in the world. A majority of which is often controlled by international organized criminal networks. To slow down this illegal enterprise, an interdisciplinary team at the Forest Products Laboratory have developed a machine learning system that can identify whether timber shipments are of illegal origin. Today, this emerging technology is being field tested across the globe.
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#deforestation #illegallogging #Xylotron #wildlife #wildcrime #seeker #nature #conservation

Read More:
The Xylotron: A Field-Deployable Machine-Vision Wood Identification System
The Xylotron is a machine-vision-based wood identification system that uses a custom-designed wood imaging device (the Xyloscope), image analysis, and statistical processing software run from a laptop/netbook. With it, users can identify over 150 species of wood more accurately than trained law enforcement personnel. The technology could help combat the global problem of illegal logging by empowering law enforcement agents to make field identification of wood.
https://www.fs.fed.us/research/highlights/highlights_display.php?in_high_id=585

The hidden toll of lockdown on rainforests
You might be forgiven for thinking that the global lockdown measures keeping us all at home can only have been good for the environment. Pollution in cities has decreased, wild animals have increasingly been spotted entering urban areas, and many new cycle lanes have opened up worldwide. But in the worlds tropical forest regions, its another story.
https://www.bbc.com/future/article/20200518-why-lockdown-is-harming-the-amazon-rainforest

Solving Crimes With Pollen, One Grain Of Evidence At A Time
To crack the case, the police required the expertise of an unusual specialist. Dallas Mildenhall, a white-haired scientist in his 70s, is a forensic palynologist a pollen and spores expert who helps solve crimes. One of only a handful of such experts in the world, he has helped solve cases of murder, arson and art forgery all over the globe.
https://www.npr.org/2015/04/25/402031990/solving-crimes-with-pollen-one-grain-of-evidence-at-a-time


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Across the globe, elephants are poached for their tusks, pangolins for their scales, and totoaba fish for their bladders. Tackling the fourth largest crime industry in the world isnt easy, but biologists, roboticists, detectives and even NASA scientists are getting creative in the hopes of making a difference. In this Seeker series, well investigate true stories of wildlife crime and meet the people who are working to protect the worlds most endangered and persecuted animals.

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