Google announced today that it’s introducing new sustainability features, including a new tool aimed at people who are considering buying an EV. The company is also launching an expanded Flood Hub and home energy comparisons.
When using Google Search to shop for or learn about an EV, people in the U.S. will now be able to quickly compare prices and battery range and discover models. They will be able to find federal government incentives for qualifying vehicles. In addition, Google is launching an updated Fuel Cost Calculator to electric and fuel-based car results to make it easier to understand the cost of charging compared with filling up at a gas station.
Flood Hub, which first launched in 2018 to provide real-time flood forecasts and visualizations, will now include more than 800 riverside locations in the U.S. and Canada.
“With the help of AI, we hope to bring flood forecasting to every country and cover more types of floods, and we’ll continue to collaborate on this with our partners in the community, governments, academia, and organizations like the World Meteorological Organization,” Google said in a blog post.
Google is also collaborating with the U.S. Forest Service update their current fire spread model by leveraging machine learning (ML) to “model more fire dynamics to help fire authorities train firefighters, plan effective fuel treatments and battle large-scale fires more safely and effectively.”
Last, in a bid to make it easier for people looking for more sustainable heating and cooling options for their homes, Google Search will now show energy efficiency information and financial incentives when people search terms like “heat pumps” or “air conditioning.” Google says the new feature is designed to help with the clean energy transition by providing more information about sustainable options for home energy.