Friday, July 10, 2020

United Nations Adopts Blockchain to Meet its Sustainable Development Goals

Blockchain, the technology backing Bitcoin is used for good across the world. The United Nations (UN), for instance, adopts blockchain to meet its Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). The intergovernmental organization uses blockchain-verified iris scans to fund Syrian refugees instead of ID cards. Also, it accepts Bitcoin and Ethereum donations and tracks the supply chain of pigs and cocoa using blockchain, according to Forbes’ report on 27, 2020.

United Nations Adopts Blockchain to Meet its Sustainable Development Goals; Claims one of the Top 50 Enterprises Using Blockchain

Per the report, Forbes recently ranked the UN, in its second annual Blockchain 50 list, as one of the top 50 major enterprises exploring the blockchain. The 75-year-old organization uses blockchain-verified iris scans to check the identity of 106,000 Syrian refugees and distribute funds to them. As such, this verification method replaces traditional ID cards and helps to curb misappropriation of funds.

Reportedly, Ban Ki-moon, the former UN Secretary-General revealed in 2012 that 30% of the UN’s development assistance is often unaccounted. To that effect, the distributed ledger technology (DLT) helps to reduce the misuse of funds and ensures that these funds get to the intended beneficiaries.

The UN Uses the Blockchain to Track Supply chain

What’s more, the United Nations International Telecommunications Union and Food and Agriculture Organization uses the blockchain to track the supply chain of pigs in Papua New Guinea, and cocoa in Ecuador. The United Nations Capital Development Fund is also looking at the DLT for payments in Nepal. And most importantly, the United Nations International Children’s Education Fund (UNICEF) is exploring the blockchain to receive crypto donations.

In October 2019, the organization launched the UNICEF Crypto Fund which receives donations in virtual currencies and sends them directly to blockchain startups. Reportedly, the Ethereum Foundation donated 1 Bitcoin and 10,000 Ethereum to the UNICEF Crypto Fund.

Guterres Says the UN Needs to Embrace Blockchain

António Guterres, the United Nations secretary-general, while making comments, said the humanitarian organization needs to embrace blockchain. According to Guterres, the UN seeks to meet its 17 Sustainable Development Goals by the 2030s. These goals aim at eliminating poverty and producing and consuming goods responsibly.

“For the United Nations to deliver better on our mandate in the digital age, we need to embrace technologies like blockchain that can help accelerate the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals,” Guterres said.

Asides from the UN, other enterprises including Amazon, BMW, De Beers, etc. are using the blockchain for good. These companies are in various industries such as payments, tech, health care, education, etc. Cryptocurrencies are also facilitating seamless transfers with low-cost fees around the world. As such, the positive impacts of the blockchain has helped to improve the way we live significantly.

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