The blockchain boom: A cause for
celebration or concern?

Since its conception in 2008, blockchain technology has developed consistently over the years. This is especially true in recent years with a record 9,973 global patents related to blockchain filed in the past year, up from 3,810 two years earlier according to new research carried out by law firm Mathys & Squire*. This fast development has raised growing concerns over the sustainability of blockchain technology due to the amount of energy needed to operate the servers, as well as the significant amount of electronic waste (e-waste) generated. The rush to secure new commercial applications of blockchain has pushed R&D in this space, with a particular focus on new uses for non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and attempts to make the technology less carbon intensive. So, what are the environmental concerns that surround blockchain and what can be done to address these? Are there other possible applications for blockchain technology that could help eliminate ethical and sustainability issues in other industries? More…