Blockchain for Sustainability: How Does It Help? In the race to modernize, we forgot to recognize that with every techno-centric revolution, our environment has been the collateral damage. The exploitation has reached a point where there are severe conjectures if future generations will even survive to witness these revolutions for which we have sacrificed everything.
As Greta Thunberg, in her famous speech on climate conservation at the UN, says, “This is not just about the environment. This is about our future.”
The least we could do is to ensure that we do not end up harming the environment any more than we have, but corrective measures are immediately taken to replenish the planet.
The third iteration of the web is just unfolding itself in front of us, and blockchain technology, the latest and greatest of all, guides the path of this newest revolution. Before it unveils the same effects as previous technologies have had, we need to intervene to look for a more sustainable way to use it.
In this blog, we focus on exploring Blockchain’s potential to change the world in every sense of the matter for the better. As a global frontrunner in technology, we now want to lead and leverage technology to undo the damage it has done.
Blockchain is a new and emerging technology that holds the foundations of a newer world that can also be beneficial to resurface the talk around sustainability and make it count.
Clean and green energy is the most sort after option to get to the path of sustainability, but, as a new path, it comes with its challenges.
The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG 7) on Affordable and Clean Energy has pledged to take care of these challenges and aims to ensure universal access to affordable, reliable, and modern energy services.
The idea of Blockchain to contribute to sustainability came into the picture because its multiple attributes hold the potential to become the backbone of society’s much-needed sustainable infrastructure.
These CLIMATE SOLUTIONS include:
Mimicking basic business logic with an ‘either’ and ‘if’ model, Blockchain-enabled innovative smart contracting is the secret recipe to streamlining business operations with no double entries.
This single-handedly brings so many positive changes by reducing the dependence on intermediaries, lowering administrative costs, and providing a free marketplace for the distribution of renewable energy.
It helps bring individuals and corporate energy investors to off-grid energy development.
It also helps streamline the process of crowdfunding for green energy projects with the help of smart contracts.
Knowing who and how much an entity contributes to the carbon credit data is essential to build a plan for future workings. It makes carbon credit data more reliable and traceable in voluntary carbon markets.
This is a perfect recipe for a cleaner and greener world. This trio holds the potential for a secured future that extends to every sector and domain of society, including economic, technological, and social.
All these benefits have also made a mark in real-life scenarios. Some of these are worth mentioning here; for the rest, you can read this research paper.
Power Ledger is a company based in Australia that uses blockchain technology to facilitate trading of electricity and environmental commodities. Among Power Ledger’s solutions, blockchain-based energy trading platforms allow renewables to be scaled with fewer inherent issues and help retailers invent new business models to capture value.
EkWateur, an electricity retailer in France, intends to address customers’ interest in energy choice. Based on the Power Ledger solution, the company’s Vision platform enables electricity consumers to trace and choose their energy mix based on the type, source, location, and amount consumed.
In June 2020, Malaysia’s Sustainable Energy Development Authority (SEDA) completed an eight-month peer-to-peer energy trading trial. The objective was to effectively trade surplus solar energy, with SEDA’s goal being to grow the country’s rooftop solar PV market in a scalable way, avoiding the need for curtailment and without causing issues to the grid.
Energy Web Foundation (EWF) is a non-profit developing publicly available, decentralized solutions designed specifically for the energy sector. EWF’s Energy Web Origin (EW Origin) is a suite of open-source, fully customizable software tools for building blockchain platforms for easy and efficient renewable energy sourcing in line with the existing standards and regulations. To date, EW Origin has been leveraged by different energy actors to establish decentralized mar
The Sun Exchange is a micro-leasing marketplace connecting investors, individuals, and companies with the beneficiaries of solar installations in rural South Africa. Recognizing that the main obstacle to the deployment of solar energy in Africa is the lack of financing for businesses and organizations and that Blockchain and crypto assets are a class of technologies that allow money to be easily transferred around the world without financial intermediaries’ negligible cost.
ECO2 Ledger, a public blockchain programmed by Synergy Blockchain Technology and overseen by the ECO2 Foundation, has been developed within the context of the international voluntary carbon market. It aims to improve the operational efficiency of carbon credit trading and to stimulate climate actions from individuals and private and public sector organizations through a blockchain-based platform.
These blockchain-led solutions spread worldwide suggest the technology’s influence and justify its potential. But even then, the solutions face a few fundamental objections and roadblocks, some due to the technology and some due to its adoption.
Let us enumerate some of these for your knowledge:
Blockchain technology is still nascent, with little data to support its use cases. This means that there is a lack of understanding when it comes to the benefits and potential of Blockchain.
Data is the backbone for this technology to work. Due to Blockchain being a new technology, there is still a lack of data that can be used for analysis and decision-making.
Blockchain technology requires internet connectivity which is still unavailable in some parts of the world. This is one of the main reasons why blockchain technology has not been able to penetrate many sectors.
While everything seems rosy, blockchain technology is also prone to multiple unavoidable environmental disadvantages like energy consumption.
It’s a brutal, unintended consequence for such a promising technology, and “mining” is at the heart of the problem. Blockchain technology is energy wasteful because it requires computers to work around the clock to validate transactions.
Blockchain used more power than 159 individual nations, including Uruguay, Nigeria, and Ireland.
Although there are ways to take care of this over-dependence on non-renewable energy sources by switching to options like green energy blockchain mining and switching to a proof of work model, these are still not in everyday practice.
Green Energy Blockchain Mining
Enabling mining with solar power and other green energy sources.
Incentivize Green Energy for Future Blockchains
New blockchains could easily offer miners better incentives, like more cryptocurrency, for using green energy — eventually forcing out polluting miners.
Proof of Stake > Proof of Work
Switch to “Proof of Stake” (PoS) systems that rely on market incentives over energy inefficient cryptographic problem-solving “Proof of Work.”
At the end of the day, we must make conscious efforts toward sustainability.
For example, developers must think long and cautiously before creating new Proof of Work blockchains because the more successful they become, the worse their ecological impact may have.
As a top-tier global technology organization, we have done our part educating and working towards sustainability. If you, too, want to join this community of woke leaders, join us on this transformation journey. For one, you can connect with our Blockchain experts at KiwiTech to know how this new age technology can help enable sustainability.