Regen Network Review – Blockchain Platform for Soil Regeneration

The blockchain space is rife with projects that only focus on making profits or allowing others to do so. While this is most certainly the biggest appeal of cryptocurrencies, we believe that most startups are not using the technology to its fullest potential. Decentralization can bring incredible benefits to humankind, but currently, money seems to be the driving force in this space.

As such, we don’t often see blockchain startups that consolidate their efforts on employing the technology for the greater good. It’s for this reason that we bring you this Regen Network review, which will give you an overview of a blockchain project that focuses on ecological data.

This article will delve deep into the tech behind Regen Network, and its scientific methods for gathering eco data. Moreover, we will assess whether the use of blockchain for this goal is warranted and what benefits it brings in the long term. However, to understand the core of this Regen Network review, let’s first introduce you to the concept of soil regeneration and why it matters.

What Is Soil Regeneration and Why Does It Matter?

Currently, the main focus of most political entities concerning climate change is to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. However, while reducing emissions is a commendable effort, is unlikely to completely halt the global warming process. Instead, scientists are increasingly turning towards solutions that actively extract existing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. As such, scholars consider practices such as reforestation and regenerating agricultural soil to be our next level of focus in the fight against climate change.

Soil scientists believe that the loss of fertile soil is one of the worst doomsday scenarios we are currently facing. At the current rate of soil degradation, we might not have sufficient cultivable land to plant enough crops to feed humanity in 50 years. Man-made calamities such as erosion, desertification and, chemical pollution are decreasing our arable topsoil at an alarming rate.

Soil regeneration is a regenerative agricultural practice that fights the climate crisis by rebuilding the soil’s organic matter. It includes a wide variety of processes that rebuild soil fertility and increase the biodiversity of the ecosystem. The goal is to invert the carbon emissions of current agricultural practices and contribute to carbon sequestration to reverse global warming. Some of the most popular methods include composting, crop diversity, little-to-no-tillage, planned grazing, cover cropping, and many more.

Benefits of Soil Regeneration

Regenerative agriculture processes have a wide variety of benefits, including:

  • Increasing organic matter leads to more resistant soils to climate change impacts such as erosion, flooding, and droughts.
  • Maintaining crop yields in cases of extreme weather in comparison to traditional farming.
  • Producing food high in nutrients.
  • Maintaining and cultivating biodiversity which is crucial to agricultural production and food security.
  • Decreasing greenhouse gasses (GHG), as food production is currently responsible for more than 50% of all CO2 released in the atmosphere.
  • Actively reversing climate change by recarbonizing the soil and capturing CO2.
  • Empowering small farmers and revitalizing local economies.

All in all, soil regeneration can become a major measure to produce a future that our children will be happy to inherit. Next in this Regen Network review, let’s jump into the details on how it provides solutions for better soil regeneration.

Regen Network Review – What Is Regen Network?

Regen Network is a startup project that provides means to track soil regeneration efforts on the blockchain. More importantly, this should allow farmers to become land stewards in addition to being simple food producers. The network wishes to become a major player in providing a transparent and accessible Payments for Ecological Services market.

Agriculturists will be able to access a free market, where they can be rewarded for their stewardship efforts on their land. They can sell their ecological services such as crop rotation, holistic grazing, or agroforestry to buyers all around the world that wish to sponsor ecological practices. This has a goal to incentivize regenerative soil use practices and do away with the current economical model that rewards degradation and ecosystem destruction.

Founded in Q2 2018, Regen Network functions as both a for-profit and non-profit organization. Its corporate branch Regen Network Development, Inc. takes care of the development part of the decentralized ledger. They are a full-stack developing company that provides the software solutions used in the Regen ecosystem.

Regen Foundation, on the other hand, is a non-profit that promotes the Regen Network and communicates with its users. It aims to create a community of land stewards and educate them on scientific methods on how to best apply proven soil regeneration practices.

How Does Regen Network Work?

The Regen Network is a decentralized ledger that runs on the Cosmos blockchain ecosystem. It’s entirely open source and has a goal to provide an open network for verifying claims and data related to the ecological state of soils. The blockchain functions on a proof-of-stake consensus mechanism and has over 80 renowned validators securing its network.

The initiative provides scientific methodologies to farmers to effectively track their soil regeneration efforts and share them in a transparent manner. Moreso, it emphasizes the process of removing carbon from the atmosphere by incentivizing farmers to provide proof of work.

To this end, Regen Network has created the CarbonPlus asset, which is the proprietary carbon credit of the network. Each credit represents one tonne of CO2 removed from the atmosphere and stored in the soil or biomass. Moreover, credits include co-benefits of the stewardship activities, like soil health or animal welfare.

Finally, the network provides a marketplace where the farmers and the buyers who wish to sponsor them can exchange these credits.

Who Can Use the Regen Network?

As such, there are three main actors in this ecosystem:

  • Land stewards – which are farmers that register on the Regen Network and wish to participate in various regenerative agriculture activities. Accessing the Regen Network allows farmers to add a new revenue stream by producing CarbonPlus credits that can be sold on the Regen Market.
  • Buyers – which are individuals, businesses, or institutions that wish to purchase CarbonPlus credits produced through soil regeneration. The CarbonPlus marketplace allows sponsors from around the globe to take climate action by directly funding farmers for their efforts.
  • Brokers – which are individuals appointed by the Regen Network that connect the two aforementioned entities on the market.

The projects and participants in the Regen Network program are listed in the Regen Registry. This growing ecosystem of stakeholders participates in the governance of the project by staking their REGEN tokens on the network. To better understand this Regen Network review, let’s have a quick overview of the process of creating CarbonPlus credits.

What Is the Process of Creating CarbonPlus Credits?

Farmers can directly register their soil regeneration project through the Regen Network website. The next step is to establish a baseline and start implementing the land management process.

Stewards can monitor data through a carefully thought-out methodology which consists of:

  • Collecting in-field soil samples in strategic points across the farmland.
  • Mapping soil organic carbon using remote sensing data, machine learning, and spatial interpolation.
  • Quantifying soil organic carbon stock.
  • Calculating the creditable carbon change by comparing previous CO2 stock in the soil.
  • Assessing the co-benefits such as animal welfare or ecosystem health to provide an extensive assessment of the project beyond CO2 sequestration.

Once monitoring is complete, the Regen Network issues CarbonPlus credits in accordance with this data to the farmers. Finally, the farmers can sell their credits on the open Regen Network market using the integrated payment systems of the network.

What Is the REGEN Token?

An important element in this Regen Network review is the REGEN token. The REGEN token is a governance and utility token on the Regen Network. Its primary use is for the payment of the transaction fees of the network. However, as the ecosystem evolves, participants will be able to use it to accomplish additional, specific actions on the network. This includes the creation of new eco credit classes such as the CarbonPlus credits.

Consequently, in the future, REGEN holders will be able to create new measurement methodologies and issue new types of credits following these datasets.

Token Economics of REGEN

Initially, the genesis event that took place in April 2021 created 100 million REGEN tokens and distributed them to various contracts and wallets. 35% of these tokens are allocated to the team and the community DAOs and are permanently locked. As such, most of the supply (70%) is still locked following the public sale and will remain that way until April 2022.

REGEN tokens have an inflation rate between 7% and 20% annually, which varies depending on the number of tokens staked. This mechanism is put in place to incentivize holders to stake their tokens, as locking REGEN secures the blockchain.

Why Use a Blockchain To Provide This Solution?

The Regen Network blockchain provides three essential elements to this ecosystem, that would be otherwise impossible to achieve without it. The immutability and transparency of the data recorded on the decentralized ledger allow for increased trust between parties. Since data provenance and quality can be tracked and verified, all farmers are playing on an even field and can showcase their progress accordingly.

Moreover, Regen Network provides a robust payment network relying on smart contracts that provide fair remuneration for the land stewards. Data can be compared and assessed automatically, without relying on a third party, ensuring an impartial reward system.

The blockchain can also connect to IoT devices for a more streamlined process that alleviates most of the challenges of the monitoring process. Through automation, soil regeneration efforts become easier and more efficient.

Finally, REGEN is essential for the issuance of a new class of assets in the form of Ecosystem Service Credits. These credits benefit from all of the usual blockchain benefits, such as ease of transfer, cheap transactions, transparency, immutability, and proof of ownership.

So, Does it Work?

Currently, the Regen Network is still doing its baby steps. The mainnet has been live for less than a year and all of the functionalities of the platform haven’t been implemented yet. For instance, only one methodology for CarbonPlus credits is available at the time of writing.

Even so, more than 200 farmers have already signed up to the Regen registry. What’s more, some of the participants have shown real progress in their projects by providing measurable data for their efforts.

Let’s have a look at some success stories that have used the CarbonPlus Grassland methodology.

  • Cavan Station in Yass, Australia, is a 9900 hectares farmland that managed to increase soil organic carbon concentration to 3.4%.
  • The Wilmot Cattle Company in Hernani, Australia has registered a 4.7% increase in CO2 sequestration on their 1800 hectare farmland.
  • The Pillango Project in Wallace County, US, has been implementing regenerative agriculture and rewilding land to restore grasslands and has already started producing CarbonPlus credits.

So, while it’s still young, Regen Network is already showing that it can provide real solutions to both farmers and eco-conscious sponsors.

Concluding our Regen Network Review

Hopefully, our Regen Network review gave you a good idea of how delighted we are to see it come to fruition. Projects that use blockchain for the greater good are too far and in between in the current blockchain environment. It’s true that the initiative might still be facing some nascent challenges. However, it has proven that when done right, decentralized ledgers can be an incredible tool for helping to save our planet.

With tokens becoming available on exchanges in the near future, it could mean increased funding for the Regen team. Hopefully, this means bumped-up marketing followed by mass adoption from new land stewards. All things considered, we are eager to see how this enterprise develops in the future.

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