As the climate change agenda pushes in the whole world, asking what improvements can be done towards carbon footprint is something that many consumers and corporations have been doing for the past years. This also includes the case of blockchain, since Ethereum and Bitcoin are already known for using more electricity than whole nations. But is this really a dead end for cryptocurrencies?
In fact, there are several blockchain platforms that are using new strategies to reduce their impact on the environment. While some may use clean energy resources (such as the sun, wind, or water), other platforms may be adjusting their own technology to make it more power-efficient. This is the case of the Takamaka blockchain, a platform developed by the company AiliA in 2018.
Spokesperson of AiliA, Professor Nicola Fausto Spoto is an expert in languages and techniques for the development and analysis of smart contracts in blockchain. He explains that energy saving is something guaranteed by the type of algorithm the Takamaka blockchain uses: the Takamaka Proof-of-stake (TPoS).
In general terms, TPoS is a kind of algorithm that is already known to be an alternative to the algorithm used by Bitcoin blockchain, for example. One of the reasons to opt for alternatives is that Bitcoin uses at least 99% of the energy consumption just to perform tasks like selecting a block marker, making it very inefficient. In TPoS though, miners are completely removed from the equation to be substituted by “validators”.
Professor Spoto explains that unlike miners, who use computing power and therefore currently solve complex mathematical problems to validate blocks, validators “temporarily allocate” their funds on blocks deemed valid (only at the time of the calculation of the stake). In other words, validators have a smarter strategy as they will only consume energy that is actually required for tasks, when they are allocated.
Moreover, Professor Spoto highlights the fact that the safety ensured by the TPoS is also another reason why people should be encouraged to become stakers, that is, participants who enter the blockchain game by betting their coins on validators. “In TPoS, a validator can be anyone who is willing to prove that they own a certain amount of cryptocurrency,” he explains. “As miners try to increase their chances of solving complex mathematical problems through additional computing power and hence power consumption, validators increase their chances of being selected for the validation of a block by inviting stakeholders to allocate tokens at their node.”
Another important detail about Takamaka blockchain which shows that the platform is not worried about the future of the planet, but also watchful of new technologies, is that the TPoS is already “completely quantum resistant” as it works with qTesla, an algorithm that provides Takamaka blockchain with a totally different approach to protect its platform from quantum attacks. And though this may look too complicated, it is worth mentioning that Takamaka uses a Java Full Stack blockchain, which means it uses one of the most basic languages that programmers and developers are used to working with.
In spite of all the pessimistic news about the so-called “cryptowinter,” Professor Spoto stresses that the crypto market has not stopped or even slowed down: “Young companies and start-ups, passionate and with great visions, are [still] attracting huge amounts of money, both from venture capital and fundraisers originating from crypto crowdfunding.” Protocols such as DeFi, NFT and WEB3 have been proving exactly that, as stressed by the professor.
Since 2018, when the Takamaka blockchain was created by AiliA, the number of registered users on the platform has only increased – to date, there are almost 20,000 registered and authorized users. In 2021, the platform has also received VQF authorization, which ensures that the Takamaka blockchain is fully compliant with Swiss anti-money laundering regulations and is considered digital money for all purposes.