A technology that was first adapted by the innovative payment network Bitcoin, blockchain technology describes a digitally and publicly shared ledger that holds a network of valuable information.
The appeal to blockchain technology is that not only does it check itself every ten minutes, but it is a completely transparent system in which all participants are made aware of any type of change or addition that is brought to the network1.
Additionally, blockchain technology is almost completely immune to the threat of foreign invasion, as an individual attempting to hack the system would not only have to tap into one computer, but every single computer that is involved within the network. This explains why a larger network strengthens the security of the given blockchain technology.
A recent effort to clean the Niger Delta has incorporated this concept of blockchain technology to its initiative. The environment and population living in the Niger Delta face many health threats because of over 10,000 oil spills that have devastated this area over the last several decades.
Oil drilling in this area has sustained the Nigerian economy, however its complete destruction of the land, vegetation and fish population has led the life expectancy of this area to be around 40 years old. While efforts have been made towards this endeavor, there is a lack of accountability within the system2.
Led by Sustainability International (SI), a U.S.-based nonprofit company that helps areas in need of innovative solutions to maintain a sustainable environment. The Clean Up Niger Delta Project is looking towards achieving a complete environmental restoration of the area by eliminating the possibility of any corruption from implementing this endeavor.
Community members of the Niger Delta can take control of their economic lives, which have previously been a bleak reality for these individuals as a result of the corruption of the local government which often leads to violence in the area.
Through the blockchain technology, community members working for this massive cleanup effort will be paid only once their assigned work has been completed and documented within the blockchain network.
The SI project incentivizes these individuals to continuously perform their assigned tasks since they know for a fact that they will be provided with a sustained flow of payment, which was not previously guaranteed.
By combining the cryptocurrency technologies of Bitcoin, Ethereum and other companies, along with virtual reality tools that confirm the completion of given tasks, the five-year goal of this project is to completely eradicate the pollution in the area.
Additionally, the project will also incorporate a series of smartphones and other tracking devices that will monitor the entire project to enhance engagement with and for the benefit of the working community members.
Not only is this project providing the people of the Niger Delta with immediate job opportunities during the cleanup process, but the completion of the complete project hopes to give potential fishers and farmers of this area new job opportunities in the future as well.
By eliminating the need for the government or other organizations from spending money on hiring workers from outside of the country. The SI project instead focuses on a commitment to improving employment rates among the local communities while simultaneously instilling a sentiment in the individuals contributing to this massive effort.
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- “What is Blockchain Technology?” – Blockgeeks
- “How Blockchain Technology is Helping to Clean the Niger River” – Bitcoin Magazine