Technology for good blockchain technology "transforms" environmental protection "little guardian"

【World Tide of Technological Innovation】

  ◎Our reporter Liu Xia

  Blockchain technology is a technology for recording data, that is, a secure and shared digital ledger, which can disperse and manage transaction records on multiple computers. It has the characteristics of decentralization, encryption, and data cannot be tampered with. It is famous for being the foundation of money or cryptocurrencies, but its uses are much more than that.

  Because blockchain technology can transmit information in a decentralized and secure manner, it has now "turned into" an environmental "little guardian" to help scientists and industry professionals solve climate and environmental problems.

  Get real decarbonization information

  According to a report on the website of the Spanish newspaper "Pioneer" on June 5, Serge Cuadrat of the Spanish company Alcott is convinced that people can use blockchain technology to improve data transparency and build trust between parties, thereby Help them take practical and effective action to decarbonize economic activity.

  One of the biggest benefits of blockchain technology is data transparency: multiple parties can access the exact same data to work together, even if they are not actively sharing it.

Relying on the blockchain, the final information cannot be tampered with, while being completely transparent and available.

  For example, the administration in Bangalore, India, has released an app that uses a map to allow people to complain about garbage disposal.

If the cleaning staff removes the garbage, they will take a photo and upload it to the App. There may have been a false report or tampering with the garbage disposal situation by the cleaning staff, but the blockchain technology makes the tampering no longer happen.

  In addition, blockchain technology can be used to collect data on different stages of product manufacturing to calculate greenhouse gas emissions, control the source of materials and processes, and manage them.

Ignaci Oliva of the I2CAT Foundation said: "This allows us to determine whether companies that claim to be committed to the environment and to tackling the climate crisis are actually doing what they say they are."

  According to a report on September 14, 2020 on the website of "Electronic Purchasing and Supply Chain News", consumers can make more informed purchasing decisions based on the above information.

For example, they can buy from companies that make recycling a top priority; logistics companies are also increasingly using verified data reporting to reduce supply chain emissions, etc.

  Promote waste recycling

  Blockchain can also be used to facilitate recycling.

An example of this is the Plastiks platform of the Barcelona-based company Nosama, according to the Spanish newspaper Herald.

Plastiks uses blockchain technology to facilitate transactions between waste managers, recyclers and buyers of recycled plastics around the world.

  One of IBM's latest projects, the Plastic Bank, is addressing the problem of plastic buildup in the ocean.

According to the EPS News website, the "plastic bank" is in the business of recycling plastic waste and selling it to manufacturers and major retailers. The innovation lies in the collection mechanism, which uses a virtual currency instead of cash to buy recycled plastic. , people can use the virtual currency to buy food, water, daily necessities, etc.

Using a business model based on a circular economy, the business has already started in some developing countries, where local recyclers make a living by recycling large amounts of plastic waste every day.

By creating an ecosystem that recycles waste plastic, the "Plastic Bank" has found a new way to tackle ocean pollution and help low-income groups.

  In addition, German chemical company BASF announced in May this year that it launched its reci Chain blockchain platform in British Columbia, Canada, to introduce a sustainable recycling model to help reduce the generation of plastic waste.

It is reported that the platform will use blockchain technology combined with digital badges and cycle counting technology to count the quantity of a specific product so that market participants can securely share recycling data.

The goal of the platform is to provide real-time up-to-date information to improve sorting, tracking and monitoring of the plastic life cycle, helping to create a platform for plastic recycling, rather than a non-linear "product-consumer-waste" life cycle.

  In the manufacturing process of plastics, various resins, additives, colorants, etc. need to be added, which makes many consumers worry about safety problems.

  According to Ledger Insights, a news outlet focused on blockchain technology, Dutch blockchain startup Circularise can use blockchain technology to reveal the origin of products and their impact on the environment, and improving product transparency can strengthen brand status.

  According to a report by Plastics Today in August 2021, the French energy giant Total Energy, the British blockchain company Circulor, the American “Recycle Up” company, and the “Innovate UK” project are also committed to using blockchain technology. Chain technology enables the recycling and reuse of plastics.

Blockchain Digital Energy, a start-up company in Catalonia, Spain, proposes to use blockchain to digitize the sale of excess electricity from its own solar installations.

  "Blockchain technology will not solve any problems by itself, but can be used as a tool to strengthen or complement processes and initiatives," Oliva told Spanish newspaper Herald.

  Energy consumption will gradually decrease

  One of the major drawbacks of blockchain is its high energy consumption and cost, but relevant people said that with the continuous advancement of technology, its energy consumption and cost will gradually decrease.

  The Spanish newspaper Herald pointed out that blockchain technology is known for its high carbon footprint, and Cuadrat estimates that the carbon footprint of blockchain is higher than the entire country of the Netherlands.

But Oliva said "energy costs are not an issue" and will be "lower and lower".

Joan Ramon Barrera, president of the Spanish Technology Center Foundation, agrees, noting: “The energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions associated with blockchain are much lower than the energy savings and carbon emissions it can save. quantity."

  In Oliva's view, economic costs are also not an issue.

"A year and a half ago, the cost of using blockchain technology was high, but now it's very affordable," he said.

  Technology hasn’t always been nature’s best friend, but that may change with the rise of blockchain technology.