The Eco Coin

The Eco Coin entered the emergent “green” cryptocurrency market in 2009, founded by innovators Lewis Just and Koert van Mensvoort, with the aim of making sustainable action the means by which digital currencies are earned. Eco Coins can be earned in a variety of manners, such as eating a meat-free meal, biking to work, or switching to a green energy provider. The value of Eco Coins is largely backed through landowners whose property has an abundance of trees, therefore “putting up” the value of the trees to Eco Coins. Owners still retain physical ownership of the tree and are compensated in Eco Coins, but the value of a said tree is converted into Eco Coin. This value is stored on a blockchain and becomes the asset that backs Eco Coin’s value. Alternatively, Eco-Coin can also be bought like any other commodity. Unlike Bitcoin, which verifies purchases and assets via “mining” Eco-coin has verifiers who visit tree sands that back the currency, verifiers in communities, and businesses that choose to use eco-coin as a proto-currency for goods. The issue that seems to arise with this coin is that it requires active community participation from verifiers, businesses, companies, along with interest to be truly effective. Being rewarded for sustainable actions seems easy enough, but when all actions have to be verified and the value of the Eco Coin is pennies on the American dollar, users might question the value of participating. Eco Coin is not forthright about how many people have bought or backed Eco Coins, and it is still very much in the experimental phase. Moving forwards, the coin could be easier to use and more attractive beyond a drive to act sustainably in order to become a viable mechanism towards engendering action.


Blockchain, Lifestyle, Psychology, Regulation