One of the main things that makes Ethereum such a behemoth of the cryptocurrency world is the gigantic token ecosystem that exists there. Almost everything that isn’t a native Layer 1 blockchain runs as an ERC20 token on the Ethereum blockchain, although many are available on other chains too. So when are we going to start to see the Chia token ecosystem take off?
This is an excellent question, and we have been getting teased some of the possibilities. But one idea came to me via Keybase from user @f00b4r and its a really good one. First, we know that Chia Network is experimenting with elements and naturism for their test tokens, featuring items like Water, Air and Energy. This has a lot of synergy with the oldest digital currency I can find being traded. No, not Bitcoin. Ven. What is Ven you ask? Great question.
Ven is the digital currency for the website / community Hub Culture. From what I can tell it is the oldest digital currency being traded on open markets, predating Bitcoin by more than a year. It is traded on Forex markets and backed by a bundle of national currencies. They are also in the process of launching another currency, Vo2 based on the Ven Blockchain. It seems to be a Proof of Stake token based on “Proof of Oxygen”, where you stake ownership of nature to generate tokens based on some AI algorithm. I don’t understand the details, but will be looking into it in a lot more detail as my interest is certainly piqued.
So why does any of this matter? Sure, the pieces are there, but it seems like just a couple of disconnected facts. Yes, Chia has been playing with similarly named tokens. And sure, Ven seems to be in the process of launching a token-based cryptocurrency. But its not like they are hosting an IETA event at in Glasgow together during COP26. Except they are. Tonight at 8pm.
Now I don’t know anything. It could just be two blockchain companies with similar environmental goals and no technology partnership, or it could be something big. Its actually pretty tough to get information on Hub Culture’s Cryptocurrency ambitions because they are all posted on their own site which you need to apply to join (or be invited). I have applied to join, but we’ll see how that goes. From what I can tell it seems that Vo2 runs on its own blockchain rather than running as a token on someone else’s but without a whitepaper or more detailed information locked behind their identity gateway it is difficult to tell. They also claim it will run on many chains, which suggests a token format rather than a layer 1 coin.
They seem to be saying that they will, or can, integrate with many blockchains including Bitcoin Lightning, Solana, Cardano and more using a blockchain gateway technology that they are developing. The github link leads to a 404 and the rest of the information links seem to circle back to the main Ven page, so I guess we will see. It is launching today apparently, so we shouldn’t have to wait long. I will be following up with the Chia team after the dinner to see what was discussed and if there is cross chain environmental crypto coming soon.
I am fascinated by the idea here, and the possibilities of Chia partnering with other environmentally focused blockchain projects. It makes sense, and has the possibility of creating a second cryptocurrency ecosystem, away from the Bitcoin/Ethereum/Third Coin question. A lot of cryptocurrency fans like to handwave away the environmental impact of Proof of Works coins because it is a difficult problem to address. An entire set of coins and tokens that sidesteps this issue, or even works to help the other way, has a much higher chance of breaking into the mainstream.
Bitcoin might not actually be boiling oceans or killing the air as it is popular to report, but it certainly isn’t doing anything to help preserve them. Both Chia and Hub Culture seem to be making deliberate attempts to use blockchain technologies to help the environment rather than burn it into dust, and I will always get behind that idea.
Update: Chia and Hub Culture hosted their dinner and you can read about some highlights and watch the panel here.