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How Blockchain Can Help the Environment

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Protecting the environment, eco-friendly practices, caring for the environment and sustainable practices have become major news headlines these days. Concerns about how human activities directly or indirectly affect the environment have led to conferences between world leaders and international organizations, global energy crisis.

Some of the biggest environmental problems facing us today are directly related to energy production and consumption. According to the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), the energy sector accounts for about two-thirds of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions attributable to human activities. Energy used in heating, electricity, transportation, and industry involves burning fossil fuels. Burning fossil fuels releases large amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2), a greenhouse gas. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has warned that fossil fuel emissions must be halved within a few years to limit global warming. IPCC Aiming to halve global emissions By 2030.

Cryptocurrencies have had their share of backlash related to greenhouse gas emissions. my some cryptocurrencies. Early cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin use the Proof of Work (PoW) consensus mechanism, which requires large amounts of energy. This is greater than the total energy consumption of some countries. data According to Digiconomist, Bitcoin’s annual power consumption is 132.82 terawatt hours (TWh), comparable to that of Argentina. Bitcoin leaves an annual carbon footprint of 74.08 tons of carbon dioxide (MTCO2). data According to Cambridge’s Bitcoin Energy Consumption Index (CBECI), Bitcoin’s current annual electricity consumption is estimated to be between 97 TWh and 149 TWh.

The energy problem in mining PoW cryptocurrencies has led to the invention of more energy efficient consensus algorithms. Some existing PoW blockchains are moving to Proof of Stake systems (PoS). Ethereum recently moved from PoW to PoS. New layer 1 blockchain projects add words like: eco-friendly, eco-friendly, sustainable In their whitepaper when describing their consensus mechanisms and cryptocurrencies. The desire for green cryptocurrencies and improvements to current environmentally destructive methods of mining cryptocurrencies is clear. In April 2021, Crypto Climate Accord (CCA) was formed. CCA is an open source environmental initiative aimed at making cryptocurrencies green. The establishment of the CCA was inspired by the Paris Climate Agreement. CCA is made up of over 250 companies and individuals across the fields of cryptocurrency and finance, technology, NGOs, energy and climate.

The quest for sustainable cryptocurrency mining has gained traction and several environmental initiatives have been launched. One such initiative is using waste energy to mine cryptocurrencies. Existing and new mining companies have sought ways to source various types of waste energy that do not increase their carbon footprint when used in mining operations.

Blockchain mining firm looking to mine cryptocurrencies using zero-carbon power has launched an investigation The “Stranded” Methane Method (CH4) can generate zero-carbon electricity. Methane, one of the greenhouse gases, is emitted during the production and transportation of coal, natural gas and oil. Methane accounts for about 20% of global emissions. A company called EZ Blockchain works with oil and gas producers to use wasted energy, including methane, by mining cryptocurrencies with such energy. Converting waste gases burned into the atmosphere to electricity to mine cryptocurrencies mitigates methane emissions, reduces the carbon footprint of the environment, and allows you to get into the cryptocurrency mining business. . This is an absolute advantage.

Autonomous, a cryptocurrency mining company focused on clean energy, uses only wind and solar power to mine cryptocurrencies. Based in Pennsylvania, Stronghold Digital Mining converts coal waste from abandoned mines into electricity, making cryptocurrency mining greener. The company removes decades-old coal waste and uses them to mine Bitcoin. Some of the coal waste is close to homes and can leach into waterways, thereby disrupting the lives of residents. Clearing out these coal wastes to mine bitcoins will clean up the environment. This process of generating energy from waste emits some greenhouse gases, but Stronghold Digital claims to use carbon capture technology to reduce CO2 emissions. The company claims to remove up to 95% of emissions.

Incentive schemes are often set up to encourage behavior change. A good example is the recycling incentive schemes introduced in different parts of the world to encourage households and waste producers to reuse and recycle plastics and their derivatives. In a survey conducted by research gate In Finland, regarding the role of financial incentives in promoting recycling, 62.6% of respondents agree that financial incentives are necessary in case of behavior change.

Blockchain has proven to be one of the best technologies to use for implementing incentive schemes. Incentives can be tokenized using blockchain technology. In this way, incentive rewards can be paid immediately and automatically. The immutability of blockchain technology also eliminates room for manipulation, so the incentive is truly earned. Many Web3 lifestyle applications have emerged. Leveraging tokenized incentives, these apps reward users with cryptocurrency tokens for achieving specific lifestyle goals. Tokens are almost instantly tradable and can be converted into fiat currency. Move-to-earn and Learn-to-earn are some of the incentive-driven concepts implemented using blockchain technology. STEPN, an NFT app to earn money, pays users in native cryptocurrency GST when they achieve their exercise and fitness goals set in the app.

Drivn, a sustainable behavior change ecosystem, rewards users for engaging in low-carbon travel behaviors. Drivn aims to make the environment cleaner by giving tokenized rewards to users who use greener transportation. This incentive system encourages users to ride more bikes, drive electric vehicles, and choose travel options with a lower carbon footprint.

Building on the success rate of other incentive-driven apps and concepts utilizing blockchain technology, leveraging blockchain technology tokenized incentives could also help encourage green practices.

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