Web3 is an internet innovation that was developed in a bid to decongest the internet monopoly from technology companies and give back autonomy to the internet user. It is also called the decentralized web.
Web3 is set to offer various benefits and revolutionize every economic sector, ensuring that every process is transparent, secure, and reliable. However, despite this good potential it still has dire environmental impacts.
Web3 utilizes lots of energy and computing power to function. Its energy consumption gives rise to great environmental concerns, especially the energy used in mining cryptocurrency.
Already, the world is combating climate change activities with the added web3 consumption which could
potentially worsen the case.
Now, after mining these cryptocurrencies, lots of water is needed for the cooling processes. An example is cooling after bitcoin mining, this will have a huge environmental impact and water bodies around. If it is in places where water resources are strained, it could lead to scarcity.
Electronic waste will increase with the increased adoption of web3 technologies, these electronic waste include mining equipment, laptops, and smartphones that will be discarded and replaced once they become obsolete.
Pollution is another environmental impact of web3, the environment is at risk of noise, air, and water pollution. There is also ecosystem disruption due to land use for the building of these cryptocurrency mining facilities.
These environmental impacts are not set in stone, hence they can be avoided, there are blockchain solutions that seek to combat these environmental impacts of web3. Renewable energy solutions are one of them.
Blockchain projects are targeted at creating and sharing renewable energy that can power web3 activities.
Also, the use of proof of stake as opposed to proof of work which is more energy intensive as a consensus mechanism can reduce energy consumption.
Also, energy-efficient hardware can be used to help reduce the amount of energy consumed by web3 activities.
The use of decentralized energy grids can also encourage individuals and organizations to share and sell excess energy.
Blockchain can be used to champion carbon-offsetting programs that will ensure that individuals and organizations carry out projects to offset their carbon emissions.
A blockchain innovative way of recycling electronic waste will also go a long way in addressing its environmental impact.
Another blockchain solution that has been explored to help combat the environmental impacts of web3 is the green NFTs, here, instead of the normal NFTs renewable energy will be used to mint these green NFTs, this seeks to reduce carbon footprints.
Blockchain can be used for environmental monitoring that gives real-time data about the environment. This ensures that sustainable practices are always carried out.
Projects seeking to do this is already underway. With more research, there are more ways blockchain can provide solutions that will effectively tackle the environmental impacts of web3.
Just like any technology, web3 side effects shouldn’t make us shy away from embracing the technology but instead, ways to ensure that it is more sustainable and equitable can be developed.
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