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Countries and companies have made repeated pledges to reduce carbon emissions, respect fishing quotas and cut toxic emissions. Now, a new initiative aims to harness the power of drones, cameras and nano-satellites to gather data and monitor whether these promises become reality.
The initiative, called “Global Ledger”, is a coordinated international initiative launched by a coalition of Young Global Leaders (YGL) at the World Economic Forum's Annual Meeting of the New Champions in Dalian, China. The project is led by Dorjee Sun, co-founder of blockchain startup Perlin and Helen Hai, a UN Goodwill Ambassador for industrialization in Africa who also heads the Blockchain Charity Foundation, which aims to use blockchain to achieve sustainable development.
What's the challenge?
Billions of people rely on the global commons for their livelihoods and it is globally recognised that urgent action is needed to address the world’s most pressing environmental issues.
Most countries have promised to limit their greenhouse gas emissions, but there is no globally accepted, standardized scientific data exists to show if those commitments are met.
While the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have gained significant traction, the loss of trust for self-monitoring by centralised institutions and the need for objective measurement remain key challenges.
Global Ledger aggregates reliable and unbiased data from public sources, companies and governments. This information is stored using blockchain technology, which ensures data is verified and almost impossible to manipulate. Through this process, called `data philanthropy’, a meaningful results report card is developed.
The plan is to make the data available openly to all interested groups - governments, NGOs, companies and individuals- so they can verify that environmental commitments are being kept.
Dorjee Sun, one of the Young Global Leaders behind the Global Ledger project, explained how valuable these data sets will be.
"Young people today want more than just activism, they want participation,” said Sun. “They can actually use data as a weapon to ensure the world they have is as transparent and as just as they deserve."
The Global Ledger will be supported by Perlin and Binance Charity Foundation for five years and based with the ICC Centre of Future Trade established by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and Perlin with support by Enterprise Singapore.
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