Blockchain ClimateCup Round Table

Conference Report

November 6, 2017

Interest has been ignited in blockchain technology’s potential contribution to solving some of the complex coordination challenges involved in addressing the urgent problem of climate change. For example, measuring and managing greenhouse gas emissions, mobilizing financial resources for mitigation and adaptation efforts, and improving transparency around climate action are key priorities of the Paris Agreement on climate change, and each requires the coordinated action of several arms-length participants — a seemingly opportune fit for distributed ledger technology.

Implementation of the Paris Agreement may benefit from development of multidisciplinary expertise and institutional collaboration at the intersection of blockchain technology and climate action. As part of its work on connecting international law and technology to overcome challenges in global governance, CIGI’s Blockchain ClimateCup Round Table brought several leading blockchain innovators together with experts in climate change policy, law and governance. Participants educated one another about the Paris Agreement implementation challenges and cutting-edge applications of blockchain technology for various aspects of climate action. The event concluded with participants brainstorming on how three key climate blockchain use cases — finance, transparency and distributed energy — may come to fruition in the near future.

About the Authors

Timiebi Aganaba is a CIGI senior fellow and holds several positions, including assistant professor of space and society in the School for the Future of Innovation in Society, at Arizona State University.

Oonagh E. Fitzgerald was director of international law at CIGI from April 2014 to February 2020. In this role, she established and oversaw CIGI’s international law research agenda, which included policy-relevant research on issues of international economic law, environmental law, IP law and innovation, and Indigenous law.