By FMW Staff
August 9, 2023
Greater Than is utilizing artificial intelligence (AI) to uncover valuable climate impact insights and strengthen sustainability in fleet management.
By converting GPS data into Crash Probability and Climate Impact Scores, Greater Than is uncovering new data-driven insights that are transforming driver risk management. For companies that provide driver safety solutions to fleets, the new layers of knowledge are providing new business opportunities in safety and sustainability management.
With the environment so high on the agenda for fleets globally, it’s not surprising that sustainability in particular is currently driving buying trends or that solutions capable of reducing climate impact and strengthening ESG reporting are in demand.
Fleet Management Weekly recently had the opportunity to interview Jim Noble, Global Director of Insurance and Head of the Americas, at Greater Than to find out more about how the company is helping its customers to enhance their fleet management offerings. Here is what we learned from our interview:
How does Greater Than convert GPS data into crash probability and climate impact?
Our AI technology enables us to understand driver impact on the roads in a unique way. All we need it 1km of GPS data to start analyzing driver impact. During each trip, our AI analyzes per-second data to create a unique DriverDNA for each trip. We compare this DriverDNA against our database of over 7 billion driving patterns, which is trained with damage data, saved CO2 emissions and fuel consumption from real trips. We’ve been training the AI since 2004, using data from over 106 countries and 1,600 cities. It’s this extensive knowledge that enables us to rapidly predict crash probability and climate impact in real-time.
Many people ask us how our AI can recognize driver patterns to develop the DriverDNA. It can be helpful to think of the AI as similar to facial recognition. But, instead of comparing data to a database of known faces, it compares billions of data sets during each trip to a database of known vehicle trips, and their outcomes.
How does the Climate Impact Score benefit fleets?
Ultimately, it helps them to elevate their sustainability efforts, reduce climate impact, and fulfil ESG reporting requirements. Our Climate Impact Score has been shown to reduce CO2 emissions by an average of 20%, which is a significant reduction, particularly for large fleets.
Do you work directly with fleets?
No, we work with fleet management companies or service providers. Because our AI can be seamlessly integrated into any existing solution, the AI-generated insights can be layered on top of existing solutions, providing fleets with the best of both worlds – the data they are accustomed to, combined with crash probability or climate impact insights.
For fleet management companies or service providers, working with us means they can deliver value-add to their customers and incorporate sustainability into their current offerings, if they don’t already.
We also partner with commercial fleet insurance companies who use our AI for accurate pricing, to reward safe driving, and to provide risk insights to fleet customers. Of course, insurance companies have been ramping up sustainability services for their customers, so adding our climate impact insights on top of the Crash Probability Score means they have less work to do on the product integration side.
What insights does the Climate Impact Score provide?
The Climate Impact Score quantifies climate impact to put fleets in greater control. It assigns drivers with an individual score, including their CO2 savings (grams or %), or EV battery savings. This makes it easy for organizations to compare eco impact across their fleet, regardless of geography, vehicle type or fuel type. It also makes it easy to identify drivers in need of eco-driving training and generates valuable data for sustainability/ESG reporting.
How does the Climate Impact Score help global environmental efforts?
Climate change is one of the biggest problems we’ve ever faced. Around the world we’ve seen many laws come into force and commitments made over recent years to achieve the “net zero” target by 2050. While any effort to reduce climate impact is good news, many of today’s targets are slow-burners, and will take several years to start making a measurable difference. Unfortunately, there are no national or global activities focused on changing driver attitude – yet that’s the aspect of transport-related climate impact we can do something about now, with no long-term financial investment required.
The relationship between driver attitude and the environment is vastly under recognized. Attitude towards risk, focus, anticipation, and speed are all of massive consequence to the environment. For example, varying speed unnecessarily because of distracted driving, ‘chasing’ the next green traffic light, or leaving an unsafe following distance, resulting in harsh braking.
The Climate Impact Score uses AI to calculate the effects that driving attitude and decisions may have on climate impact. It also provides fleet managers with insights into why a driver has the Score they do, helping to support eco-training and reduce climate impact.
Many fleets are already transitioning to EVs, so would the Climate Impact Score be of any relevance to hybrid/EV fleets?
Absolutely! In fact, it helps to eradicate some of the biggest concerns around EVs for fleets. Battery range anxiety, for example, is a common concern, particularly as many people driving for work travel long distances. Not only do they need to achieve as many miles as possible from each charge, but they need to minimize charging time and frequency.
The Climate Impact Score shows how driving attitude affects battery range and therefore helps fleets to maximize range and reduce charging frequency. Of course, reducing charging frequency also helps the environment.
Another key concern is EV repairs and maintenance costs. As any fleet will know, encouraging safe driving helps to reduce crashes as well as vehicle wear and tear. The same applies to EVs. Because the Climate Impact Score identifies areas of concern, it helps fleets to encourage safer, more sustainable driving behaviors which, in turn, help to reduce incidents and wear and tear.
Can you tell us a little more about the crash probability insights you can provide?
Of course, we also have a Crash Probability Score that works in the same way, by analyzing GPS data to uncover crash probability insights. It can identify the 15% of drivers who are responsible for 50% of crashes, as well as the 85% of drivers who are lowest risk. This helps to identify high-risk drivers for targeted training or intervention, and to recognize and engage the safest drivers.
What technology is needed to get started?
All we require is GPS data, which can be accessed via API from dashcam, connected car, telematics device, or other system. Because most of our clients already work with large volumes of connected vehicles, the set-up is very quick.
Greater Than has offices in Stockholm, Denver, Singapore, Tokyo, Palo Alto, London, and Brussels. To learn more, visit www.greaterthan.eu.