2024-05-21

Fujitsu and Mizuho leverage AI to track trends in humpback whale migration and promote sustainable tourism for Hachijo Island

By Toey

TOKYO, May 21, 2024 – (JCN Newswire via SeaPRwire.com) – Fujitsu Limited, Mizuho Financial Group, Inc., Mizuho Bank, Ltd., Mizuho Research & Technologies, Ltd. and Hachijo Town, Tokyo today announced that Fujitsu will deploy its AI-based image recognition technology in a pilot program to better grasp trends in humpback whale migration in the area, while exploring potential use of this data to promote ethical tourism. The project marks an important milestone in efforts to make Hachijo Island a smart and sustainable island.

This project aims to conserve and allow for residents and visitors alike to enjoy Hachijo Island’s precious natural resources in accordance with the framework of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government’s “Tokyo Treasure Island Sustainable Island Creation Project.”

1. Sustainability in tourism and government for a “smart island”

As the only major financial institution operating on Hachijo Island, Mizuho is leveraging its knowledge regarding finance and digital technology to realize a “smart island,” as part of an initiative to tackle regional issues through the real-world implementation of digital technology. To this end, Mizuho promotes a variety of initiatives, including digitalization of government processes and tourism promotion.(1)

The humpback whale symbolizes the richness and diversity of Hachijo Island’s precious natural environment. Mizuho has been collaborating with Hachijo Town and Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology in conducting ecological research, supporting the introduction of digitalization to promote tourism. In particular, Mizuho continues to support field trials to better understand trends of humpback whale migration using AI image recognition technology, which obtains video data from fixed-point cameras installed for disaster prevention purposes.

By utilizing Fujitsu’s AI technology and strengthening this project, the precision of ecological surveys that used to be done manually will be improved, contributing to biodiversity conservation, and timely information about the status of humpback whale migration will be provided creating new tourist attractions in harmony with the local natural environment.

2. Project summary

Implementation period From May 2024 to the end of October 2024(This may be extended based on the verification results)
Implementation summary Using an AI model trained with the migration behavior of humpback whales, Fujitsu and the project partners will analyze video data from multiple fixed point cameras on the island to verify the feasibility of humpback whale detection. At the same time, the operational flow in utilizing the detection results, with a focus on specific ways to utilize them, such as informing tourists about the status humpback whale migration is being considered.

Mizuho Bank, Mizuho Research & Technologies, Hachijo Town, and Fujitsu will have the following roles:

Mizuho Bank, Mizuho Research & Technologies Overall support for the construction and implementation of this projectVarious coordination with other measures related to smart island creation
Hachijo Town Provision of image and video data of humpback whalesConsideration and coordination to utilize this project for tourism promotion
Fujitsu Provision of “Fujitsu Kozuchi” (2)Support for AI model construction and video data analysis
 
Figure 1. Fixed-point camera installation map
Figure 2. Field trial image (from image gathered by fixed-point cameras to detection)

 

[1] August 30, 2022, News release: [Promoting Hachijo Island as a smart island] Hachijo Town enters a “Comprehensive Partnership Agreement on Sustainability and DX Promotion” with Mizuho Bank and Mizuho Research & Technologies (in Japanese)https://www.mizuho-fg.co.jp/release/20220830release_jp.html
[2] “Fujitsu Kozuchi”: “Fujitsu Kozuchi” is an AI service that expands customers’ productivity and creativity with high reliability and safety.Fujitsu Group has defined coexistence with nature (preservation of biodiversity) as one of the materialities (key areas of contribution) in “resolving global environmental issues.” Fujitsu will contribute to solving social issues by providing technologies and services that support digital innovation.https://www.fujitsu.com/global/services/kozuchi/

Reference

Humpback whale migration in Hachijo Island (Hachijo Island Tourism Association) (in Japanese)

Figure 3. This photo was provided by Yosuke Kato of the Laboratory of Cetacean Biology of Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology, Hachijo Town and Hachijo Island Tourism Association

About Fujitsu

Fujitsu’s purpose is to make the world more sustainable by building trust in society through innovation. As the digital transformation partner of choice for customers in over 100 countries, our 124,000 employees work to resolve some of the greatest challenges facing humanity. Our range of services and solutions draw on five key technologies: Computing, Networks, AI, Data & Security, and Converging Technologies, which we bring together to deliver sustainability transformation. Fujitsu Limited (TSE:6702) reported consolidated revenues of 3.7 trillion yen (US$26 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2024 and remains the top digital services company in Japan by market share. Find out more: www.fujitsu.com.

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