When people think of bitcoins, the first thing that might come to mind is digital currency. However, cryptographic technology is being adapted in order to save the environment. This type of technology is becoming increasingly popular, because of the increase of the bitcoin price.
How can cryptographic technology help the environment?
Ecologists like Guillaume Chapron say that the environment needs cryptogovernance. He believes that blockchain cryptographic technology can give sustainability in order to gain trust, and avoid corruption. He said that part of the environmental crisis is increasing because of the lack of trust.
There is a growing distance between multiple people (such as the companies and government) which leads to more instances of fraud. That is why we need a form of cryptogovernance with a computer code. According to Chapron, one benefit of blockchain technology is that it gives the company ownership of natural resources. Therefore, a company will be able to get a time stamp and verification.
Another benefit is how this technology can trace goods through their life cycle, and they will be able to trace the ecological footprints by using the internet of things. So how does the internet of things help with this? for starters, the sensors will be able to record the environmental impacts of the manufacturing processes. It will also change how we perceive ownership, which will be beneficial for developing countries. This is because rights are not always defined.
Furthermore, it gives communities power by getting direct payments in bitcoin for services related to the ecosystem. It will also give better policy making via bitcoin voting and decentralized sharing economies.
Last of all, it will also change incentives. This is because the blockchain will ensure that an event will happen. Chapron explains in an interview with Science magazine, that if you include a contract with a blockchain, you will be able to include a computer code. That way, when a company meets a condition, you can automatically execute the contract.
What you need to consider with blockchain
Blockchain is still slow, Chapron says in his Nature paper “The environment needs cryptogovernance” that it can complete seven transactions every second, while Visa can complete 2000. Moreover, blockchain takes up a lot of energy, and if you lose your private key for your bitcoin wallet, then you will permanently lose your digital signature and your bitcoins.
How do blockchains work?
The blockchain can ensure that there is recorded information, such as a document, a transaction, event, and even an identity. If an asset can be assigned something like a barcode, then you can include it. This is run through a crytographic function , and creates a set of numbers and letters (or hash) that is stored in the blockchain. You, as the user will be able to recalculate it later in order to prove that the asset existed at a certain time, and you won’t have to reveal the asset.
It is still a new technology, and it will take time to be adopted by companies. One area that is starting to look at blockchain technology is smartphones. However, it is time for businesses to try blockchain cryptographic technology, in order to help us become more sustainable.