Global 4C has its first interview on the internet. Global 4C is presented as a proposal for world transition.
May 12, 2014.
by Cameron Gray
See the original article here.
Can cryptocurrencies help stop climate change?
The author of this article is affiliated with the project)
Amidst these radical times of the early twenty-first century we face complex problems. Our modern economic system is showing signs of structural instability, we’re overly dependent on fossil fuels, and experts are forecasting that global warming will be catastrophic unless mitigated. How can we transition from legacy systems to more sustainable systems without our efforts being in vain? Powerful new ideas are emerging from currency theory; known as “complementary” or “transition” currencies. It appears that currencies can be intrinsically backed by values that help maintain biodiversity and conditions for life. This is a potential new role for money, and crypto-currencies could be hugely influential in evolving this concept. It may also shine a more positive light on the platform that is all too often misrepresented.
Complementary Currencies for Climate Change (4C)
On my travels to Australia I ran into Dr. Delton Chen who is developing a policy that will reward digital currencies, called 4C, to those who reduce their CO2 emissions. He argues that rather then just using taxes or carbon credits to mitigate, we need governments to establish a globalized Internet currency that will be issued upon mitigation.
A lot of us need to be reminded that Global Warming does not just mean warmer summers. It’s worsening floods, droughts, ocean acidification, population displacement, rising sea levels, expensive food, and ultimatelyeconomic distress and political turmoil. Upon asking Delton what Global Warming could mean for future political tensions, he replied:
“It’s hard to imagine the impacts of such massive change, however it seems possible that geopolitical tensions over resources could erupt into local and regional conflicts, and eventually a breakdown of negotiations under the United Nations. The warming will continue unless we mitigate, and so without an effective plan for strong mitigation we run the risk of international goodwill completely evaporating and force becoming a default policy. Climate change is a ‘risk multiplier’. For instance, how will Climate Change increase the risk of nuclear conflict? Such questions are a cloud over our heads should the climate be allowed to undergo major changes this century.” – Delton Chen
Chen believes a globalized currency ‘reward’ system backed by governments may be our best chance to reduce greenhouse emissions and limit the impacts of climate change. Taxes are unpopular and carbon credits get stuck in a political quagmire. Chen said that the world needs a currency and a profit motive to exponentially reduce our carbon emissions over the coming four decades. We should take the 2008-9 Global Financial Crisis as a lesson on how fiat currencies can be used by governments to cover expenses. He says that we need to think objectively about this, and focus on how we can use the power of money to solve the problem of climate change. This is what Global 4C is all about.
How does Global 4C work?
The Global 4C mechanism would loosely work like this: four of the most influential nations would each host a 4C currency, and then negotiate the rules for 4C trading with the rest of the world. These rules would only affect the way that 4C are traded after the 4C are minted into existence. The way that the 4C money will be minted is the most important concept, and this needs to be egalitarian: upon 100kg of CO2-e that is mitigated, one unit of 4C will be issued to the enterprise that did the mitigation. This reward process would be codified for all manner of mitigation technology, including energy efficiency, cleaner energy, abatement, reforestation, etc.
Governments and central banks will be in charge of leveraging the 4C price with currency trading. This economic power would be sufficient to transition the global economy towards de-carbonization. The issuance mechanism would be limited by the world’s ability to mitigate, and governments would have a master ‘control knob’, the 4C price, to manage this process. By increasing the market price over 40 years or so, the economy would be incentivized into transition. It’s a rational system.
Chen thinks that if a leading nation, such as the United States, would legislate 4C, then other countries would come on board to negotiate a Global 4C Mitigation Protocol. The political appeal of this monetary approach may be strong, because the 4C price will start at zero dollars and there are no taxes involved (i.e. easy to find agreement).
It appears that ‘programmable money’ may have some advantages over fiat, in terms of speed and efficiency, and this may be of interest to governments and investors in the near future. Global 4C could take advantage of the ability to program 4C currencies to greatly improve the efficiency of administration, especially for contracts and verification. Recent examples that head in this direction include Fidor, a bank in Germany, announced that it will incorporate Ripple into their system; and the Canadian Government also attempted their own digital currency, Mint Chip, but since abandoned the project.
4C will be an international currency that could help us transition into new economic territory. The future economy needs to be linked to things like sustainable energy, climate mitigation, biodiversity, and community. There are already efforts being directed this way with digital currencies such as Permacredits and SolarCoin.
Support Global 4C
Since my visit to Australia, Delton has brought me on as part of the team as Crypto Currency Public Relations. We are entering Global 4C into the MIT contest called Climate CoLab to promote the policy. The contest objective is to convince the United States Congress to put a price on carbon. If you would like to learn more about how the policy works, details can be found on: climatecolab.org.
We may be the only team in the MIT competition proposing “smart money” as an economic tool to mitigate carbon, so make sure to vote for us if you believe in the project and digital currency. We could use all the support from the crypto community as possible.
The policy website is still under construction, but the link is g4cm.org, or Google search ‘Global 4C Mitigation Policy’.