Blockchain technology, popularly known for being the technology behind the bitcoin cryptocurrency, is a revolutionary technology and is finding its applications in diverse sectors. It is a decentralised digital ledger technology (DLT) that uses cryptography and timestamps for secure records. It makes organisations decentralised and transparent.
Blockchain allows users to have peer-to-peer transactions without involving a central mediator. As per the report by Fortune Business Insights, the global blockchain technology market is expected to cross US$21 billion by the end of 2025, growing at a CAGR of ~38.4 per cent. Global companies are investing in blockchain research centres to develop and deploy blockchain technology in their organisations.
Civic Ledger's pilot research project offers digital trading opportunities for FNQ irrigators
Cooperative Research Centre for Developing Northern Australia (CRCNA) is collaborating with Civic Ledger, researchers, the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) Blockchain Innovation Hub, industry representatives from the Queensland Department of Natural Resources Mines and Energy, SunWater, Griffith University and FNQ Growers for improving water markets and trading by using new digital technologies over the next six months.
Civic Ledger's new pilot research project is seen as a groundbreaking project for Far North Queensland irrigators.
The new project will allow the irrigators to use blockchain technology for entering a new water market and trading platform.
The CEO Jed Matz, CRCNA, said the project would see irrigators' participation from across the Atherton Tablelands in Far North Queensland. The project will offer a demonstration of blockchain technology to the irrigators. The project will explain how blockchain and smart contracts work for the stakeholders, including irrigators.
The team will also educate the irrigators about how the technology may help them to save money and make an improved decision due to access to real-time water trading information. The response collected by participating irrigators on accessing and using the blockchain technology platform will create the foundation for improving technology and better adoption of the Company's Water Ledger platform, added Mr Jed Matz.
Katrina Donaghy, the CEO and Co-founder of Civic Ledger, said that the Company is grateful for the support it received from CRCNA for this significant work at a time when there is growing concerns of the shortage of water. The time calls for transparency on how scarce water is managed throughout the world.
The Company hopes that the research project will significantly contribute to form a public register that will enhance transparency across the industry and build public confidence. The register will keep all data on water trading in one place, she added.
Ms Donaghy said that Water Ledger platform would be a game-changer for the irrigators as it would alter the traditional way of trading temporary water allocations. For developing and bringing innovation across water markets, it is essential to eliminate pointless complexities in how water allocations are traded. The water ledger platform will simplify the process and offer more clarity to stakeholders.
The insights and data collected through the Civic Ledger's research project will be used for trading optimisation for the growing Northern Australia agriculture industry. The pilot project will provide useful information for water trading platform's further development.
Blockchain to protect Australian beef export industry
Australian beef is one of the most sought-after meat and is world-renowned for its best quality. However, in the COVID-19 era, Australian beef export industry is threatened due to the rising concerns about the potential health risks. To address this, a local firm is using blockchain technology to offer a solution to the safety concerns related to the beef export industry.
Aglive, a local Australian Company in a small town of Riverdale, is working with the government on using blockchain technology to guarantee the longevity of the beef export industry and creation of an application focused on traceability.
The Company, in collaboration with Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA), developed Austracker product which uses IoT and blockchain technologies to track paddock-to-plate beef exports. It says it is a pioneer in using public blockchain technology for the global beef market.
To see how it works, the Company tracked beef from a rural farm to Brisbane, Australia through land transport, followed by shipping and delivery to a destination in China. The Austracker was updated and tagged on each checkpoint. It provided relevant data to each stakeholder throughout the stages.
Why is blockchain more useful during COVID-19 crisis?
Image source: Pixabay
Blockchain can benefit businesses and countries in many ways; here are a few examples of how it can be used to manage some of the challenges during the ongoing pandemic:
- Blockchain in supply chain management: COVID-19 has created disruptions across global supply chains. On the one hand, due to lockdown restrictions and safety concerns, factories have shut down, and on the other hand, there is a massive demand for certain goods like medical supplies. To meet these demands, users source supplies without having any information on the origin and quality. This technology could be extremely beneficial in supply chains as it can connect all stakeholders in a supply chain, and all stakeholders will get access to a single source of truth.
- Contact tracing during the pandemic: The crisis requires data gathering of patients to monitor their movements. It is crucial to ensure that social distancing is being implemented successfully. At the same time, patients' privacy should also be maintained. Blockchain technology can contribute significantly to contact tracing by gathering and collating patient data more efficiently. Here, users will get the control of personal data which they can selectively share to help in stopping the spread of the contagious infection. It will protect users’ identity and their sensitive information as there is no central authority in the blockchain technology.
- Blockchain in disaster relief and insurance: During the pandemic time, the lockdown and social distancing measures have affected the economies worldwide. In this period of economic distress, government all over the world is providing financial supports to ailing businesses. Blockchain is used in giving loans and used by the insurance industry. It removes any third-party intermediaries and delays in processing. Furthermore, it simplifies the entire process at a low cost.
The blockchain market is continuously growing, and the technology can provide significant solutions during the unprecedented situation created by the SARS-CoV-2 outbreak.