The 8th European Blockchain Convention discussed blockchain’s opportunities to address sustainability problems. The panel was moderated by Victoria Gago, Co-Founder of the European Blockchain Convention. The panelists include Salvatore Provenzano, VP of Sales Europe of Settlemint, Marcos Carrera, Head of Blockchain & Web3 Iberia at Fujitsu, and Mariana de la Roche, Regulatory Affairs Manager at IOTA.
Blockchain Technology and Sustainability
Salvatore believes that blockchain can be a tool for a sustainable future as it offers a single source of truth for data verification, enhancing audibility and enabling the development of concrete use cases for sustainability.
From a human rights perspective, Mariana sees the potential of blockchain in accelerating actions for major impact, citing examples such as carbon credits and financial inclusion for people that have long been excluded from the systems.
“We have only one life. We have only one world. One planet. Do your best using blockchain. This is the mentality, that’s all.”
– Marcos Carrera, Head of Blockchain & Web3 Iberia at Fujitsu
Sustainable Blockchain Use Cases
Representing Settlemint, Salvatore shares that their platform can be used to track and trace carbon credits, ensuring that they are being used efficiently and effectively in reducing carbon emissions.
Marcos presents the Botanical Water Technologies that Fujitsu has developed, which aims to offer a new sustainable and circular source of clean drinking water. Using blockchain technology, the company is able to create a secondary market for water that is no longer usable in the food industry but can be repurposed for other industries.
According to Mariana, IOTA has implemented various practical use cases of blockchain to address sustainability. The Dig_IT project aims to understand the environmental impact and labor rights in mines by developing digital twins of the mines.
The IotaOrigin project is dedicated to tracing minerals in conflict areas for human rights protection. The Trade Logistics Information Pipeline (TLIP) project is a cooperation between the IOTA Foundation and TradeMark East Africa, aiming to digitalize processes and facilitate goods transfer between East African countries and the UK.
IOTA also developed the Digital Product Passport (DPP) to improve the circular economy and the DigitalMRV project that puts sensors and different machines in plants to monitor the actual emissions of a particular machine.
Challenges to Implementing Blockchain for Sustainability
Marcos thinks that companies need to change their mindset and build new business models to address sustainability problems with emerging technologies.
Mariana believes that one of the challenges in implementing blockchain for sustainability is the lack of clear definitions and understanding of social impact within the blockchain ecosystem, which, she argues, creates barriers to mainstream adoption. Additionally, she thinks cooperation with governments and regulatory compliance is crucial for enabling innovation in the sustainability space.
“Competition is good sometimes, yeah, but you are stronger if you work together, and that’s a reality.”
– Mariana de la Roche, Regulatory Affairs Manager at IOTA