WEF reveals eight blockchain ‘game changers’ in new use case report

September 17, 2018
Chris Wheal

The World Economic Forum has outined around 65 use cases for blockchain, some of which address the “most pressing” environmental challenges, in a report published at the weekend.

Courtesy of the World Economic Forum

Entitled “Building Block(chain)s for a Better Planet”, the report by the Switzerland-based organisation suggests that as the technology matures it will be applied across a wider set of sectors and systems.

“There is both a challenge and an opportunity to realise blockchain’s potential – not just for finance, but for people and the planet,” the report says.

Blockchain has the potential to disrupt the way in which the world manages environmental resources to help drive sustainable growth, it adds, identifying around 65 use cases, eight of which it describes as “game changers” where the technology cound “fundamentally disrupt current systems and approaches”.

Eight game changers

These game changers are as follows:

  • “See-through” supply chains: recording transactional data throughout the supply chain on a blockchain and establishing an immutable record of provenance offers full traceability from source to store
  • Decentralised and sustainable resource management: platforms could collate distributed data on resources such as household-level water and energy data to end the asymmetry of information that exists between stakeholders
  • New sources of sustainable finance: blockchain-enabled finance platforms could revolutionise access to capital
  • Incentivising circular economies: encouraging companies and governments to unlock financial value from things that are currently wasted, discarded or treated as economically invaluable to help realise a truly circular economy
  • Transforming carbon markets: harnessing the use of crypto tokens to optimise existing market platforms for carbon trading
  • Next-generation sustainability monitoring: helping companies manage and improve their performance, while enabling consumers and investors to make better-informed decisions
  • Disaster preparedness and humanitarian relief: underpinning a new shared system to improve efficiency, effectiveness, co-ordination and trust of resources for multiple parties involved in delivering aid and relief
  • Earth-management platforms: monitoring and managing market mechanisms that protect life on land and ocean health

The report concludes: “To date, these opportunities remain largely untapped by developers, investors, and governments, yet they represent an opportunity to unlock and monetise value that is currently embedded in environmental systems.”

Post written by Chris Wheal
Chris Wheal is editor of OpenLedger's news and features service. An award-wining business journalists himself, he runs a team of freelance journalists from across the UK and north America.

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