How Open Forest Protocol Is Planting Trees One Block At A Time

March 9, 2022 6:29 pm

Corporate social responsibility has become a hot-button topic in our times.

Large conglomerates are often blamed for exploiting the environment, pollution, contributing to carbon emissions, and then doing absolutely nothing to stem these issues or ‘give back’.

To counter growing concerns and activism in the financial space, many investment funds and firms such as Blackrock now rate companies along environmental, social, and governance dimensions known as ESG for short.

Likewise, public relations departments of these corporations have taken notice of the growing public sentiment towards large business concerns and the environment…

In an attempt to foster better corporate-public relations the PR departments at these corporations have taken steps to ensure Corporate social responsibility.

Environmentalists and other activists may have cheered this new era which emphasized CSR, but the nature of corporate structures often lends to a lack of transparency.

Corporations today have the option of creating in-house teams or divisions which directly engage in environmental cleanup, conservation, and other efforts, or they can create a CSR budget then outsource the work to other firms specializing in that work.

However, all these options come with their own pitfalls. In-house CSR efforts may present conflicts of interest with the core business of the corporation; outsourcing efforts means that the 3rd party needs to be trusted.

In an effort to bring greater transparency and to ensure corporate social responsibility in the environmental space Open Forest protocol was born.

Open Forest runs on the NEAR protocol, and is a blockchain solution which utilizes satellites, IoT technology, mobile phone tech, and drones to verify that trees which have been purportedly planted have indeed been planted.

Once all the data is successfully registered, verified, consolidated, and stored using the Open Forest protocol, the corporations using the Open Forest solution will be granted more financing for their carbon producing ventures.

I recently had a chance to learn about Open Forest Protocol at Rim Jeong’s talk at the Tulum Crypto Club:

Open Forest summarizes the problem facing certain environmental CSR efforts today:

According to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), beyond simply conserving and planting forests, there remains a strong need to :

“Establish monitoring systems that use an appropriate combination of remote sensing and ground-based forest carbon inventory approaches with a focus on estimating anthropogenic forest-related greenhouse gas emissions by sources, removals by sinks, forest carbon stocks and forest area changes.

All estimates should be transparent, consistent, as accurate as possible, and should reduce uncertainties, as far as national capabilities and capacities permit.”

This Open Forest article on their Medium page had more on the protocol’s governance:

Ecosystem-wide governance of OFP is under development via the Open Forest Congress. The Open Forest Congress is the custom OFP DAO built using the fantastic tools from Sputnik V2. For a little context, NEAR launched Sputnik V1 in March of 2021, Sputnik V2 came out around July, and has since been used as a basis for NEAR’s Astro DAO.

The reason OFP is building with Sputnik V2 is because of the neat customizations possible with different proposal kinds and actions. These functions provide the foundation for a host of different governance policies and roles that can be custom-created for specific needs and contexts.

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