Blockchain may be one of the most impactful technologies in decades but many people associate it with a negative impact on the environment due to the high energy requirements for bitcoin mining. Fortunately, not all blockchain networks involve energy-intensive mining to operate.
Algorand takes a proactive approach towards blockchain sustainability by deploying an environment-friendly consensus protocol and focusing on playing a leading role in providing green blockchain solutions.
Algorand: A Pure Proof of Stake (PPoS) Chain
Algorand is an open-source blockchain network that consumes substantially less energy than the majority of its peers. The network is secure, fast, and multifunctional, being capable of hosting decentralized applications (DApps) and a wide array of different digital assets.
Everyone can build on Algorand without having any remorse for climate change.
Some Bitcoin alternatives came out to address the carbon footprint issue by introducing the Proof of Stake (PoS) algorithm, but their solutions sacrifice decentralization. Algorand has taken this algorithm to the next level and made sure that no group of block validators may ever have more control than the rest of the token holders.
The blockchain founded by MIT Professor Silvio Micali achieves this thanks to its unique algorithm, called Pure Proof of Stake (PPoS).
How Does PPoS Make Carbon Neutrality Possible?
Pure Proof of Stake (PPoS) is a protocol that enables Algorand to address the so-called Blockchain Trilemma, in which none of the three key elements of an ideal blockchain – scalability, security, and decentralization – are compromised.
On top of that, PPoS is carbon neutral because it doesn’t rely on massive electricity consumption needs, unlike Proof of Work (PoW) chains. Instead, PPoS was developed to be environmentally friendly from the ground up.
The PPoS algorithm has a straightforward principle. While it enables every user to become a block validator by staking the native token in the system (an approach typical for PoS blockchains), the protocol selects block validators randomly and secretly for any given period. Given that all users have equal chances to be picked by the system, the network is fully decentralized, as no one knows who the next block validator will be.
In the Algorand network, there is no need for mining, as users can become validators simply by staking their ALGO tokens. In this way, Algorand manages to achieve carbon neutrality.
While other PoS blockchains also manage to minimize electricity consumption to negligible levels, they lack true decentralization. In “traditional” Proof of Stake chains, the wealthiest validators with the most tokens have the most control over the network. They also receive the largest share of the block reward, increasing their share of the circulating token supply. As a result, PoS networks typically have a handful of validators who have the ability to control the network.
Algorand is unique because it has managed to build a system that is decentralized, secure, fast, and environmentally friendly at the same time. The PPoS protocol ties the security of the entire ecosystem to the honesty of the majority of users rather than a limited subset of the economy.
Algorand has been built to foster a borderless economy with a global user base and use cases in mind. Therefore, it would be absurd to ignore global climate change concerns.
A clean environment is a priority for the United Nations (UN), global institutions, and most governments. At least two of UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), part of the Agenda 2030, directly mention cleaner energy and global warming:
- SDG nr. 7 — Affordable and clean energy.
- SDG nr. 13 — Take urgent action to combat climate change.
One may assume that when Bitcoin came out, the creator wasn’t prepared for the adoption level we see today. However, new blockchain networks that are in development now, should consider global change concerns in the first place.
Algorand delivers sustainable blockchain technology that can be used for years to come without affecting the environment in a negative way.
Why Blockchain Sustainability Matters
Global, borderless, open-source technologies that aim to make the world a better place cannot disregard their impact on the environment.
Providing more inclusive access to new Internet-native financial products and services cannot come at the expense of fuelling climate change.
Instead, the blockchain industry needs to take a proactive approach to blockchain sustainability to ensure that new blockchain-powered solutions not only benefit businesses and consumers but the environment as well. Or, at the very least, not harm it in the way that many legacy technologies have done in the past.
To achieve a sustainable blockchain industry, businesses and open-source projects should not only focus on deploying carbon neutral technology but also focus on use cases that drive eco-friendly initiatives.
Environment-Friendly Use-Cases on Algorand
It’s not only about the infrastructure – Algorand itself is an environment-friendly ecosystem at every level, and this is reflected in its culture and use cases as well.
Micali explained that he cares about the planet, which is why he made sure to invent a technology that doesn’t pollute the environment in any direct or indirect way.
The Algorand network promotes carbon neutrality, including through its use cases and partnerships.
For example, PlanetWatch is leveraging Algorand to build and roll out a global network of affordable air quality sensors that may be implemented by conscious companies and individuals to validate and share data online in real-time. This monitoring system is used to share historical and real-time data on air quality.
Moreover, at the end of last year, Algorand was picked by ClimateTrade, a blockchain marketplace for CO2 carbon offsetting. The company aims to ensure transparency and traceability in carbon markets by leveraging blockchain. Climatetrade provides its services to large Spanish and international companies, such as Melià Hotels, Cabify, Iberia, and Telefónica, among others.
The clients can access a marketplace when they can conveniently offset their carbon footprint by choosing from several carbon credits. All the processes are conducted through an intuitive dashboard.
Francisco Benedito, CEO of Climatetrade, stressed that Algorand was the most suitable technology to implement at this point, considering its scalability potential and low fees. He said:
“After analyzing several technology providers and rigorous due diligence, we chose Algorand as the blockchain infrastructure to power our platform. We have no doubt, Algorand is the perfect solution due to its flexible architecture, low transaction fees and scalability of transactional performance. In addition, they are the only pure proof-of stake (PPoS) network and we have an aligned business vision.”
What’s more, an increasing number of NFTs are being minted on the Algorand chain because it enables issuers to produce millions of NFTs at an extremely low cost and substantially more environment-friendly manner than on other leading smart contract-enabled blockchain networks.
The goal of Algorand is to provide users with the best version of blockchain while keeping the ecosystem as environmentally friendly as possible.