Blockchain technology is a platitude that has no real meaning that a layman can easily comprehend and use. People are consistently hearing terms like blockchain technology, cryptocurrencies, and smart contracts and are using them synonymously without getting a hold of the real meaning. However, these advanced technologies are becoming vital in the ever-evolving digital world. As blockchain technology continues to become more user-friendly and popular, the onus is on us to learn about this ever-evolving technology and prepare well for the future.
This article is about the current state of blockchain integration in national economies, how it is making tremendous differences on a national level, and a few use cases of blockchain across industries like financial and gaming.
Blockchain technology plays a significant role in digital society and has become an integral part of national economies with a rising rate of adoption. Of course, there are several hurdles that need to be overcome to make blockchain a part of national infrastructure. Blockchain technology facilitates peer-to-peer transactions without requiring any third party to interfere. This way, the technology is potentially revolutionizing the way industries like financial services are operating. This can have substantial implications for national economies and reduce transaction costs while increasing the efficiency of various systems.
Blockchain applications have the ability to develop more fairness and transparency while saving enterprises time and money. Advanced technology is positively affecting a wide variety of sectors, allowing them to work more effectively. Some of the real-world blockchain applications that have become popular in 2023 include media, government, non-fungible tokens, logistics, healthcare, the Internet of Things (IoT), personal identity security, smart contracts, and money transfers.
Blockchain technology’s biggest advantage lies in its decentralized nature, which eliminates the need for any central authority and provides account transparency and accountability for those who value them. These are important elements for any organization, and blockchain technology tends to further enhance them without relying on any centralized authority to validate or verify transactions.
Based on the current developments, the maturity of the public distributed ledger needs to increase to unlock blockchain’s transformative power. Policies need to focus on different non-technological barriers like existing organizational and legal frameworks and incompatibility between different blockchain solutions. This requires utilizing blockchain’s transformative power to create new organizations, standards, structures, and processes.
Blockchain technology greatly improves supply chain management by allowing cost-effective and quick delivery of goods and services, enhancing traceability, providing greater financial access, and improving the coordination between the partners involved.
A key challenge common in the digital world is the lack of cyber security. Cyber security ensures the authenticity of users. Traditional authentication techniques like passwords can be easily compromised by fraudsters and hackers. Blockchain technology can create a decentralized and secure authentication system and create a secure and transparent system of transactions. Moreover, blockchain provides decentralized storage systems that are much more secure.
Blockchain technology is currently still not widely used at a national level, but it has been incorporated into several major industries, like the financial and gaming sectors. These industries act as a key study for us to determine how blockchain technology can evolve and benefit people at a national level. The decentralized blockchain networks have made crypto casino sites more secure with protected player information encryption. There is no centralized server that can be hacked easily by cyber criminals.
Fintech solutions such as virtual wallets offer added flexibility while depositing and withdrawing funds from casino accounts.
Decentralized marketplaces on online casinos now allow a more open, transparent economy, allowing players to trade, buy, and sell digital assets without requiring intermediaries like publishers or game developers. All in all, blockchain technology has successfully been introduced in a few major industries to prove that the technology is viable at a national level.
Although decentralized blockchain technology has revolutionized the way people make payments and enjoy other advantages, it is still not being used at a national level. The costs and efforts required to implement blockchain technology into national economies are still incredibly high. Government officials are not willing to go out of their way to spend additional money. A lot of hype exists around the use of blockchain technology, making business leaders keenly interested in blockchain adoption.
However, the technology faces a few adoption challenges, preventing governments from using the technology, despite the benefits. These challenges are related to technological inefficiencies, lack of regulation, and limited awareness or knowledge. The challenges need to be addressed by central authorities for blockchain to become omnipresent and more accessible for all. Many obstacles stand in the way of blockchain adoption, and it is most unlikely to be adopted at a national level anytime soon.
It is still unlikely for us to see blockchain being adopted in national economies in the next few years. More governments and businesses need to adopt blockchain to allow significant changes to happen in the way financial transactions are made. It is still early to predict how the long-term effects of blockchain will be. However, it is an undeniable fact that technology has great potential to become a game-changing tool for national economies and across various industries around the world.
Imagine you’re a general, camped outside a fortified city with your army. Your army isn’t strong enough to take the city without help. But you do have help: camped on other hills outside this city are a half dozen more generals, with their armies ready to attack. Attacking one army at a time will fail; taking this city will require at least three or four armies, and an uncoordinated attack will leave thousands dead outside the city gates. How do you coordinate an attack with the other generals? Now, how do you coordinate your attack if one of those other generals is Benedict Arnold? What happens when one of the generals is working with the enemy?
This situation is a slight rephrasing of the Byzantine Generals Problem, first presented in the ACM Transactions on Programming Languages and Systems in 1982. It’s related to the Two Generals Problem formulated a decade prior. These are the analogies we use when we talk about trust over a communications channel, how hard it is to transmit knowledge, and how to form a consensus around imperfect facts.
This problem was upended in late 2008 when Satoshi Nakamoto, a person or group of people, published a white paper on the ‘block chain’. This was the solution to double-spending in digital currency. Think of it as having a digital thing that only one person could own. As a test of this block chain technology, Bitcoin was launched at the beginning of 2009. Things got more annoying from there.
Now, blockchain is at the top of the hype cycle. Every industry is looking at blockchain tech to figure out how it will work for them. Kodak launched their own blockchain, there are proposals to use the blockchain in drones and 3D printers. Medical records could be stored on the blockchain, HIPAA be damned, and there’s a blockchain phone, for reasons. This doesn’t even cover the massive amount of speculation in Bitcoin itself; thousands of other cryptocurrencies have also sprung up, and people are losing money.
The blockchain is a confusing thing, with hashes and Merkle trees and timestamps. Everyone is left asking themselves, what does the blockchain actually do? Is there an independent body out there that will tell me what the blockchain is good for, and when I should use it? You’re in luck: NIST, the National Institute of Standards and Technology released their report on blockchain technology (PDF). Is blockchain magic? No, no it is not, and it probably shouldn’t be used for anything other than a currency.
For more than a decade, I have been a huge proponent of blockchain tech. I invented Bitcoin and recently I brought the blockchain to IoT devices for an augmented reality gaming experience. Snark aside, blockchain tech is important because it solves a problem, and one that is at the core of trust and verifiability in computing platforms.
However, the NIST report on blockchain tech is overbearingly accurate. There is little reason to use blockchain as a solution. It is, in fact, a solution looking for a problem. But to understand why the blockchain is a silver bullet in search of a werewolf, you first have to understand what a blockchain actually is.
The NIST report describes blockchains as such:
Blockchains are a distributed ledger comprised of blocks. Each block is comprised of a block
header containing metadata about the block, and block data containing a set of transactions and
other related data. Every block header (except for the very first block of the blockchain) contains
a cryptographic link to the previous block’s header. Each transaction involves one or more
blockchain network users and a recording of what happened, and it is digitally signed by the user
who submitted the transaction.
That’s a lot of verbiage. Here’s a definition that I think is better:
A blockchain is a linked list where each item in the list contains data and a hash of the previous item in the list. Appending to the list requires agreement by the majority of users.
That’s a fairly simple explanation. It doesn’t have anything to do with ‘ledgers’, a bonus because I have no idea what accountants actually do. It defines the blockchain using existing computer science paradigms. Its brevity belies its accuracy; it’s very hard to actually fault this simple definition for being inaccurate.
Besides defining what a blockchain actually is, what are the applications for a blockchain, and what does NIST think about them?
Instead of telling you why you don’t need a blockchain, the NIST white paper has a helpful guide on what makes a good use-case for a blockchain. If you have many, distributed users, a blockchain might be a good idea. If there a desire for a lack of a trusted third party, blockchains could work. If there is a need for a decentralized naming server, or a need for a cryptographically secure system of ownership, a blockchain might work. But there are caveats.
Take, for example, any one of the number of startups that want to reduce the cost of mailing or faxing medical records between doctors. They’re using a blockchain. This is a dumb idea, because medical records are covered under HIPAA and need to be kept private. Harry the HIPAA Hippo will be enraged when he finds his medical records available to everyone with access to this blockchain.
Another example. Let’s say you’re an electronics manufacturer, and you want to catalog the serial numbers of all your sub-assemblies and finished products. This is an admirable goal; more data means better process engineering. If you find a lot of warranty claims on products that have a subassembly manufactured after April 14th, you might want to figure out what changes were made to the production line on that day. But do you need a blockchain? Probably not. Databases exist, and there’s really no reason for anyone else to have access to that data.
But the future of the blockchain isn’t entirely bleak. There’s one use case where it excels — proving ownership of digital goods, like cryptocurrency, or Bitcoin, or Dogecoin. This can even be extended to proving ownership of digital lands or items; think of it as an unhackable City Hall in Second Life. This was the original intention behind the blockchain, but the hype has grown to unreasonable proportions. It can’t be applied to everything, and doing so is a waste of resources. For all those asking, ‘what can a blockchain do for me’, the answer is just cryptocurrency, with few exceptions. For everything else, just set up a database.
Looking at specific use-case, in Supply Chain management, blockchain can help companies proactively detect and mitigate supply chain risks before any severe impact occurs. Moreover, blockchain is used in the tokenization of assets where an issuer can create digital tokens on a distributed ledger, which represent either digital or physical assets. The technology ensures that once you buy tokens that represent an asset, no one else can erase it or change your ownership. Even the Government of India is exploring various ways to leverage blockchain in KYC and digital identification2.
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Which aspects of blockchain are covered in the course?
In the 6-months of learning, one can expect to cover key courses and gain skills such as blockchain fundamentals and how to build Smart Contracts using Ethereum & Solidity. The course will also teach about building DApps (Decentralized Apps) using Hyperledger and learn about how the industry is using blockchain Tradeoffs across Multichain, Ripple, Corda, EOS & Cosmos. There are multiple Capstone Projects & Specific Projects that enable a learner to gain on-the-job knowledge about blockchain.
What do the experts at IIIT Hyderabad say about the course?
Dr Kannan Srinathan, Lead Faculty at IIIT Hyderabad, said, "Blockchain is a unique technology, which for the first time encompasses all the aspects of game theory, distributed computing as well as cryptography, confluence and coming together so that trust emerges. Currently, IIIT has decided to have executive education on blockade technologies.”
Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technologies
Sunil Aggarwal, Dean - Blockchain Programs at TalentSprint, said, "Anything which can be transacted digitally will ultimately embrace blockchain. IIIT Hyderabad is running not only a special program in blockchain but it is also running a centre of excellence in the blockchain. This combination is something you cannot get anywhere else in India. Any successful participant after this program would be able to build an independent business application using either Ethereum blockchain or Hyperledger Fabric blockchain framework. Not only can the learner actually participate in all kinds of blockchain-based uses, but they can also participate in building unique distributed ledger technology solutions.”
Harsh Patel, Faculty at IIIT Hyderabad, said, " The main aspect for the core skills is to make students understand what are the various use cases that are possibly using blockchain and how it can be applied in the real world. To take some examples, we deliver around 19 lessons on blockchain and also hands-on experience on smart contracts by virtue of lectures as well as the labs.
How does this course make you an expert in blockchain?
This 6-month long course will help you understand the ins and outs of blockchain technology. Apart from teaching you the fundamentals of blockchain, the course will help those who want to accelerate their career growth with expertise in blockchain. Once the course is completed, learner will be able to
What insights do program alumni offer regarding the program's worth?
Talking about their experiences with Advanced Certification Course in Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technologies from IIIT Hyderabad, learner Chitrabandhu Ghosh, Vice President - Investment Bank, said, "Currently, there is no other course in India that combines such extensive depth and breadth within its curriculum.”
Another participant of the course, Tabitha Lavanya Mamilla, Capability Manager at Tech Mahindra, said, "Speaking about the curriculum design, I must highlight its remarkable ability to make learning accessible to beginners while ensuring expertise by the end of the program."Cohorts of Advanced Certification Course in Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technologies from IIIT Hyderabad
How is the program delivered?
The IIIT Hyderabad's Advanced Certificate Program in Blockchain and Distributed Ledger Technologies is a 6-months program which provides a comprehensive take on blockchain technology. The course provides a hands-on learning experience about the latest in blockchain technology. The program covers multiple formats of online learning such as 100% Live Interactive Sessions with IIIT Hyderabad faculty on weekends, Hackathons, Projects and Group Assignments. IIIT Hyderabad also provided handholding for Startups & one-to-one mentorship.
Who should enroll in this course?
Professionals with a minimum of 1 year of work experience, readiness for learning basics of coding and a eager interest in venturing into the blockchain sector are most suitable for this course. Entrepreneurs exploring blockchain-based business opportunities will also gain multiple essential inputs from this course. A diverse range of professionals having 1 to 15 years of work experience from various industries such as IT, Manufacturing, Supply Chain, Consulting, Finance, Automobiles, Fintech, Blockchain startups and many more have benefitted from this course.
The blockchain industry has witnessed remarkable growth and innovation in latest years, revolutionizing various sectors with its decentralized and transparent nature. However, amid this rapid development, the importance of patents and intellectual property (IP) in the blockchain ecosystem cannot be overstated.
Patents play a vital role in every major industry protecting and incentivizing innovation. They provide legal protection for novel ideas, algorithms, processes, and inventions. With patents, innovators can safeguard their intellectual capital, encouraging them to invest time and resources into research and development, knowing that their efforts will be protected. Some of the top industry leaders holding blockchain-related patents include IBM, Baidu, Alipay, Toyota, Bank of America, and Microsoft.
Moreover, patents grant companies a competitive advantage by offering exclusivity over their inventions. This exclusivity allows them to differentiate their products or services in a crowded marketplace. By holding patents on blockchain-related technologies, companies can prevent competitors from using or commercializing their inventions, thus solidifying their market position.
IBM serves as a compelling example of a company that recognizes the value of patents and IP in the blockchain industry. Over the years, IBM has been actively pursuing and acquiring patents related to blockchain technology. IBM holds an impressive number of blockchain patents, firmly establishing its position as a key player in the industry.
One notable example is IBM's patent for "A Blockchain for Program Code Execution." This patent addresses the challenge of securely executing program code in a blockchain network, offering a solution that ensures the integrity and authenticity of the executed code. By securing this patent, IBM protects its innovative approach and gains a competitive edge by having exclusive rights over the technology.
Another avenue that allows for the same protections involves licensing patents. A company called Silakab Corp allows for exactly that. With their global, all-encompassing omnibus patents, companies, startups, and even government entities can leverage Silakab Corp through an exclusive licensing deal to gain IP protection and remain focused on innovation and creating blockchain applications.
As an example, Silakab’s patents focus on the protection of data, personal information, and physical property, giving companies a significant advantage when using Silakab’s patents for the basis of their blockchain architectural design. Silakab’s patents also include ground-to-satellite communications using blockchain, which has a wide array of applications in IoT and communication networks. As major corporations and governments begin investing their time and effort into technologies like Blockchain, having IP protection will become an essential component of doing business.
Despite the large demand, patent issuance has actually been declining at a dramatic rate over the past couple of years, meaning that they are becoming harder to obtain. Issuance went from 3,000 in 2020 to less than 1,000 in 2023. On top of that, patent litigation is increasing and a heightened understanding of blockchain technology in the judicial system will lead to greater enforcement. This further bolsters the importance of owning a blockchain-related patent or being able to license one if you’re developing blockchain products and services.
In the fast-paced world of blockchain technology, patents and intellectual property are vital in driving innovation, ensuring a competitive advantage, and protecting the fruits of research and development. Companies like IBM have recognized this importance and invested significantly in acquiring patents for blockchain-related inventions, while others like Silakab Corp have done the hard work to make patents available to companies that can’t afford to pursue the rigorous process of patent approval themselves. By securing patents and protecting IP, companies can pave the way for future advancements and foster a thriving ecosystem of blockchain innovation.
A blockchain operating system uses blockchain as a support system that runs in the background of a computer system or platform. For instance, your Android mobile or Windows PC needs a local installation of the respective operating system (OS) on the smartphone’s memory or on the PC’s hard disk, and all transactions and commands are executed locally. A blockchain-based OS captures all commands and transactions from a user’s device where authenticating, executing, and recording them occurs on the blockchain.
Beyond the standard payment processing system of the popular Bitcoin cryptocurrency, blockchain is finding extensive use all across the technology stack. The emerging fad among the technical development on distributed ledger technology is the blockchain operating system.
A blockchain essentially works as a ledger turned transaction processing engine. Whether you need a payment processed, or you need to arm your cryptokitty with the latest gadget on the Ethereum platform, or if you want to track your high-cost wine shipment right from the vineyard to your doorstep on the VeChain blockchain, all such applications of blockchain are based on authenticating, recording, and processing transactions.
Any standard operating system, be it Microsoft Windows, Apple Mac, or mobile systems like Android or iOS, also executes transactions based on user commands issued through mouse-clicks or screen-taps where all the tasks get completed locally on the device. The same concept is extended to the use of a blockchain for device OS, where its use for working as an operating system is seen as a more efficient OS.
Early attempts to build blockchain-based OS first emerged for mobile and smartphone use, and it was a cloud-based virtual system. All the necessary transaction processing occurs on the cloud-hosted blockchain-based data center, with the user only issuing necessary commands through the taps on the device touchscreen.
For instance, Hong Kong-based NYNJA Group Ltd. has a strategic collaboration with Amgoo smartphone makers for its blockchain-based NYNJA virtual operating system (vOS). The two companies will work with telecom operators in Latin America to provide NYNJA vOS users with an initial block of data upon activation. The vOS supports a communication layer offering text, voice, video conferencing, and project management tools, a secure payments layer for commercial transactions, and a multi-currency wallet that supports Bitcoin, Ethereum, and all ERC-20 compatible tokens.
The OS platform also supports a marketplace for commercial activities—like allocating the skilled ‘gig economy workers to specific job demands from the users, and a market for users to buy and sell goods. The vOS is supported by its native cryptocurrency called NYNJAcoin or NYN.
All benefits and advantages of blockchain are expected to be available to blockchain OS users.
Whatever a user does on their Android or iOS mobiles, or Windows or Mac PCs is prone to be captured by the respective apps, ISPs, as well as OS manufacturers who may record all user activities in the OS logs. Blockchain-based OS offers benefits of security and privacy, and the de-regulated, decentralized use of OS.
The concept is still evolving, and real-world use is limited. However, if it succeeds in offering a smooth and clutter-free working of the device OS, it may not be too far to see more and more devices running on such blockchain OS.
Real estate is one of the most lucrative and dynamic industries globally, representing a significant portion of the world's wealth. In latest years, the real estate market has been undergoing a transformation with the advent of technologies such as artificial intelligence, big data analytics, and the Internet of Things. Among these technologies, blockchain has emerged as a revolutionary force that promises to reshape the industry in unprecedented ways. Blockchain, the underlying technology behind cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum, has the potential to bring a level of transparency, efficiency, and security to real estate transactions that were previously unimaginable.
At its core, blockchain is a decentralized, distributed ledger that records transactions across multiple computers in such a way that the transactions are permanent, transparent, and tamper-proof. Once a transaction is recorded on the blockchain, it cannot be altered or deleted without the consensus of all participants in the network. This makes blockchain a highly secure and reliable means of recording transactions, offering an immutable audit trail for any asset, including real estate properties.
Blockchain technology offers a multitude of benefits for the real estate industry, from increased transparency and trust to cost and time savings. The ability to tokenize real estate assets and execute smart contracts further enhances the potential of blockchain to revolutionize the industry. However, the widespread adoption of blockchain technology in real estate requires the collaboration of stakeholders, the establishment of regulatory frameworks, and the development of interoperable platforms. As the industry continues to embrace this technology, blockchain is poised to become an integral part of the future of real estate.
To understand this electrifying, rich topic, you must know or learn the basics of blockchain technology.
Let’s get some introductory definitions: what is a non-fungible token and how can it be used in publishing?
To understand this electrifying, rich topic, you must know or learn the basics of blockchain technology. One must grasp the meanings of cryptography, make use of cryptocurrencies and open a cryptocurrency wallet.
You’ll need an account on an NFT marketplace to create your own NFT. This is the land of electricity and digital displays as seen through a computer or a handheld device. It is changing how we see and view money, assets and how the world handles old-fashioned cash. Hold on to your wallet, your relationships — your everything — if you want to venture into this business of crypto, NFTs and blockchains. Remember the old “trust but verify” adage.
According to Forbes, “An NFT is a digital asset that can come in the form of art, music, in-game items, videos, and more. They are bought and sold online, frequently with cryptocurrency, and they are generally encoded with the same underlying software as many cryptos.” NFTs are becoming popular ways to create and distribute art.
A blockchain is, as explained by Synopsys, “…a distributed database that maintains a continuously growing list of ordered records, called blocks. These blocks ‘are linked using cryptography. Each block contains a cryptographic hash of the previous block, a timestamp and transaction data.” They are decentralized solutions without a singular point of failure with a public digital ledger to keep record of transactions. It is immutable, or cannot be altered, and the network must come to a consensus to verify each transaction.
Think of this as a real-life chain, similar to a chain that lumberjacks use to pull logs out of the woods made of metal/iron links. The newest link with data and information is in your hand; the oldest link “cryptology” is the last link at the other end of the chain. No worries on understanding the tech jargon. Folks such as Techjury think only 0.5 percent of the people on planet Earth are using this blockchain technology. In other words, 99.5 percent of the people on the planet may not even understand this paragraph.
Like most technology, the study and education around newly created assets bring focus and clarity to issues like NFTs. Understanding that there are new technologies being constantly built may be comforting for business owners, but it will never be enough. You must always be looking for competent new talent to pay for their knowledge.
The quick answer is yes, but there are issues with copyright, funding, sales and more. This article from the Library of Congress helps provide some context for the legal side in regard to ownership of NFTs.
Well, ride ’em cowboy! There’s a new publisher in town and it’s called the blockchain. Authors, writers and self-publishers can publish limited copies of their literary works as NFTs. This can deliver the author some credibility and even create a bit of press, potentially increasing the value of their works among certain buyers. An NFT can help rid the author of a publishing body and go directly to the consumer. But, so can a basic author-owned website — without the potential copyright issues. It’s similar in a way to creating a book or piece of art via AI, and then trying to truly own it. This creates a complex situation where copyrights can be heavily disputed.
I mean frankly, if you know what you are really doing, you could find some potentially lucrative opportunities in the NFT space. If you don’t know what you are doing, you should expect a huge learning curve. This new technology can level the financial playing field. NFTs are not bar codes of a centralized system to be accessed by anyone with authority to do so. This is a decentralized technology in a digital wallet. I wish universities, high schools and libraries were teaching this technology to the masses as it was being debuted, instead of catching up on the back end. Learning and using crypto and NFTs is a process, a skill set and an educated talent.
Advice for any artist, creator or publisher is: You are not alone. Step outside your comfort zone, outside of your expertise and your training. As you age in the technoworld or become interested in being a user of new technology, seek help and advice from the educated. Crypto is more than an invitation found on the tail end of your social media accounts.
Understanding NFTs and how they can provide a positive impact on your life is a great place to begin learning about this awesome tech. Learn the language, and ask how an NFT works. Everyone has heard about them but how do they really work? NFTs are not imaginary, they are real. The government taxes their capital gains — that makes them really real. There are thousands of articles, videos and papers on NFTs from a variety of interested parties.
A lot of folks talk negatively about crypto, blockchain, NFTs and more in the “cyber wallet industry.” I encourage you to explore and learn about the fascinating world of crypto. Beware, true experts are hard to come by and if the electricity fails and you cannot get connected, you might need to borrow an old-fashioned paper dollar from the fellow down the street for your next purchase.
You may have more questions than answers at this point. For myself, I truly cannot learn enough.
The information provided here is not investment, tax or financial advice. You should consult with a licensed professional for advice concerning your specific situation.
Binance published a blog post on Monday teaching readers how to dispel commonly cited blockchain FUD related to the industry’s energy footprint and supposed environmental harm.
As the company points out, most of the industry’s energy footprint is related to mining on the Bitcoin network, which uses a proof of work (POW) consensus mechanism.
Most modern blockchains, however, use alternative consensus mechanisms like proof of stake (POS), which do not focus on energy consumption to keep the network decentralized.
“The Crypto Carbon Ratings Institute (CCRI) has examined the impact of Ethereum’s transition from PoW to PoS and found that its annualized electricity consumption went down by more than 99.9% as a result of the upgrade,” wrote Binance. “Accordingly, Ethereum’s carbon footprint also decreased by 99.9%.”
Not only do these blockchains consume little energy, but many are using their unique features to help enable green energy initiatives.
Peer-to-peer energy trading, for example, lets traders buy and sell excess renewable energy. Blockchains can also be used for transparent carbon footprint tracking in the context of supply chains, which can further encourage businesses to reduce their environmental impact.
The “elephant in the room,” however, remains the Bitcoin mining industry, which has been subject to major scrutiny from activist groups and the White House alike. While estimates of Bitcoin’s energy consumption vary widely, it’s often compared to that of small countries, including Norway or Finland.
Thankfully, a substantial portion of the mining sector’s activity appears to be powered by either renewable or sustainable energy sources, such as wind, solar, and hydroelectric power.
Again, estimates of the exact share can vary depending on time and the methodologies used to measure the figure. More conservative estimates based on miner geolocation data estimate Bitcoin’s green energy mix to be around 38%. Meanwhile, more optimistic estimates based on direct surveys of Bitcoin mining companies estimate this figure as high as 63%.
According to blockchain researcher Juan Ignacio Ibanez – who recently co-authored a research paper on the subject – the real answer is likely somewhere in between these figures. Nevertheless, he expects the figure to rise over time.
“Both sides of this debate have legitimate arguments,” concluded Binance. “Here, it’s best to encourage a balanced view of blockchain technology, acknowledging both its challenges and its potential to drive positive change.”
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