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Is technology an enabler for sustainability?

How blockchain can be used across value chains to achieve sustainability

This report focusses on emerging technologies, specifically blockchain and the value it can generate for achieving sustainable goals when applied to value chains. Technology, and moreover blockchain, will equip industries with the ability to provide market regulators and consumers with a new level of transparency and assurance across global value chains.

The impact of climate change

“Limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius is not impossible, but will require unprecedented transitions in all aspects of society,” warned Hoesung Lee, chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), upon the release of the panel’s report in October 2018. The IPCC says global net human-caused carbon-dioxide emissions must be reduced to zero by 2050 to keep global warming below 1.5°C. In the absence of such action, the IPCC predicts that the Earth’s temperature will increase to over double this, to 3.2°C above pre-industrial levels by 2100, with catastrophic consequences.

Despite images of polar bears’ melting habitats and scorched landscapes from wildfires, the consequences of climate change seem vague and abstract. Many know the effects will be terrible, but policymakers struggle to describe how climate change will change our way of life—and thereby get the world to act.

Technology for sustainability

Blockchain has the potential to address challenges posed by consumers’ growing need for transparency and information through improved data management, impact quantification, and verification and traceability of goods.

The use cases identified for the technology, presented in this report, that can create significant value for end-to-end value chains and more over sustainability and assurance are:

  • Stock management, particularly within the fishing industry
  • Enabling the circular economy through the greater recycling of plastics
  • Reduction of counterfeit products
  • Reduction in food waste

In order to demonstrate how blockchain and artificial intelligence are already transforming industries to achieve sustainability goals, this report showcases a case study from Deloitte’s proprietary tool “Fresh Analytics” which is currently in use by a leading retailer.

Getting started with an implementation roadmap

Deloitte partners with clients to explore every aspect of blockchain technology and develop tailored solutions designed to deliver value. Through strategy, architecture, design, and development, we serve our clients in their quest for innovative blockchain solutions that are market-ready and address real business

To progress a blockchain initiative we suggest a three phase implementation roadmap to enable solutions advance from design, to development and ultimately implementation and ecosystem adoption and scaling.

Download the report to find out more.

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