Home » Blockchain Green and gold: The crypto projects saving the planet Blockchain Reading 3 min While the world argued about the ethics of crypto, these projects changed the world for the better during 2021. It seems as though the potential benefits of cryptocurrency are often overshadowed by the technology’s inherent vulnerability to exploitation. And it’s true, crypto adoption does come with risks. Over the past year, governments from around the world have raised concerns that crypto could be used to finance terrorism or other illicit activity like money laundering. There have been prohibitive measures everywhere from China to Nigeria, with many crypto exchanges forced into a legislative chokehold. While crypto has its challenges, it has also become a tool for policymakers and activists wanting to make the world a better place. The climate crisis During 2021, public scrutiny of Bitcoin (BTC) energy-intensive mining practices dominated headlines all year long — and for good reason. According to Digiconomist, Bitcoin mining consumes a similar amount of energy to an entire small country like the Netherlands or the Philippines. However, many environmental activists are already using the very same technology as a tool in the fight against climate change. For example, smart token contracts have allowed charitable institutions to raise funds in a way never seen before. Many of these “charity tokens” have a tax system that charges a fee with every transaction, which can then be wired to a charity of choice. For example, the World of Waves (WOW) token is on a mission to restore the planet’s oceans and combat climate change. In 2020, world's oceans may have stored up to 1 sextillion more joules of heat energy than in 2019. Warmer water contributes to melting sea ice. Seas may have absorbed enough heat last year to boil 1.3 billion kettles of water. Buy $WOW & support climate conservation efforts. pic.twitter.com/4ehOOc2iq0 — World of Waves (Official) 🌊 (@World_Of_Waves) November 13, 2021 The project has a transactional tax of 11% that is redistributed back to all holders, 3.3% to the liquidity pool and 4.4% to the WOW charity wallet. As the charity wallet grows, funds are extracted monthly for donations towards nature conservation activities and the preservation of wildlife. According to the project’s Twitter page, over $49,000 has already been donated. WOW chief operating officer Kristijan Tot told Cointelegraph: #India @CryptoRelief_ @VitalikButerin @RyoshiResearchThe #India #Covid #Crypto Relief Fund donation has been spent! This is good news for everyone! For the ones that supported the donation, and also for the ones that opposed! What do you think #ShibArmy?https://t.co/dbxNx84bVF pic.twitter.com/fe7w5swdge — SHIB INFORMER (@ShibInformer) September 26, 2021 Is crypto a force for social good or bad? If there has ever been a year to prove that crypto is truly morally agnostic, it was 2021. Around the world, the same technology used to finance terrorism was also used to fund healthcare amid the COVID-19 pandemic. While the world argued about the impact that energy-intensive BTC mining projects have on the environment, others created crypto projects and tokens to save our planet. As we move into 2022, whether crypto is a force for good or bad remains in the eyes of the holder.