For thirty years, innovators have dreamed of a “financial Internet”. But efforts to create virtual currencies uniformly failed. The problem was simple: how do you make sure an electronic bit of information is really, really unique? This is called the “double-spending” problem.
The 2008 paper by “Satoshi Nakamoto” solved that with a “multi-stamping” system called the blockchain. It was simple and elegant enough that it worked. The first currency to use implement a blockchain was Nakamoto’s Bitcoin, and Bitcoin remains the grand-daddy of all virtual currencies.
Bitcoin is a very good store of value, especially since there can never be more than 21 million Bitcoin. And it’s secure.
Bitcoin is really the first World Currency. It can never be controlled by any government or small group, and transactions can flow smoothly, anywhere.
But the world needs more than Bitcoin, which is slow and not very programmable. Along came Ethereum, with its smart contracts.
And since then, we’ve had thousands of “Alt Coins”. These offer specialized capabilities. In fact, we are witnessing the representation of every possible human activity and asset in a digital form.
Let’s take, for example, water. Easily the most valuable commodity on Earth, it is also tremendously wasted.
In fact, 80% of all sewage, and 70% of all industrial toxic waste, go untreated.
The tiny percentage of the world’s water that is fresh, is becoming scarce: just look at the droughts in California; and even the huge Ogallala aquifer in the Midwest is being drained at an unsustainable rate.
People know there’s a problem, and they care. My company, OriginClear, is in the industrial water treatment business. And I hear from regular people all the time. My inbox is filled with their alerts.
Yes, the water industry is doing its best but infrastructure is aging, and the US government, for example, no longer really helps out.
So, we’re developing a specialized cryptocurrency known as ClearAqua™. It’s how everyone can participate at some level in solving the world’s water problems.
ClearAqua is a representative democracy. Holders of ClearAqua coins elect delegates or “Witnesses” who then vote on proposed solutions to specific water problems.
In short, ClearAqua is a decentralized currency that provides a focused environment for people wanting to help improve the state of water in the world.
Of course, it’s not enough to send up proposals to solve water problems; someone has to come up with the money to make that happen. We’re working on that, and streamlining the financial system with an innovative, patent-pending crypto “envelope” called $H2O™.
This is exciting and right at the forefront of rapid change in our industry.
What’s also exciting is that cryptocurrencies could help us all deal with the runaway inflation that is now gripping the economy of most developed countries, including the USA. While the buying power of the dollar continues to drop, these specialized currencies should remain stable and enable both industry and regular people to carry on.
In short, cryptocurrency may be the best news we could possibly imagine in these times of financial disruption. I’m proud to be part of this movement.
By Riggs Eckelberry, Founding CEO, OriginClear (OTC: OCLN)
Riggs Eckelberry came to the water industry from a quarter century in high technology, specializing in commercializing breakthrough technologies. During the dotcom, he worked on a series of tech successes, such as Quarterdeck’s CleanSweep, security software vendor Panda Software, and the sale of companies to EarthWeb, BeFree, and BellSouth. Just prior to founding what is now OriginClear, he helped drive security software company, CyberDefender, to an IPO on the NASDAQ as its President and Chief Operating Officer. The son of an international businessman, Eckelberry learned management in the nonprofit space and as a commercial ship captain and officer. He enjoys skiing and sailing and transforming the water industry to deal with the growing water challenges of our time.