Tue. Sep 26th, 2023

People who are concerned about climate change have pushed the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to stop selling non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

NFTs are digital pieces of artwork that are all absolutely unique. They are related to and utilise blockchain technology, which largely runs through Ethereum, a cryptocurrency.

When a customer acquires an NFT they contribute to a lot of energy usage—especially if they’re using Ethereum—because of the security system in place that demands users work out challenging problems utilising energy-intensive devices. The goal of these puzzles is to require a lot of energy since it makes it less cost-effective if someone wants to meddle with the ledger.

WWF Stops Selling NFTs

WWF believed they were employing a more sustainable NFT technology when they decided to use the Polygon network to distribute their NFTs. While Polygon’s “proof of stake” mechanism “to validate transactions” utilises less energy, Polygon still uses blockchain technology in Ethereum, which is far from being energy efficient.

According to The Verge, “Polygon has contracts on the Ethereum network representing millions of transactions. Those contracts are important to send assets back and forth between Polygon and Ethereum and fulfil other critical activities for Polygon.”

Basically, they can’t remove themselves from the impact of Ethereum. A digital economist, Alex de Vries, found that, instead of the 0.207 grammes of CO2 per transaction which WWF assumed would occur, it would really be closer to 430 grammes.

On Friday, WWF released a statement indicating they will “bring this trial to a close.”

”We know that NFTs are a widely contested issue and we all have loads to learn about this new market, which is why we will now fully examine the impact of this experiment and think on how we can best continue to innovate to engage our supporters.”

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By Adam

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