Our thoughts on Web3 pathways, a primer series
Chapter 2: Why standards matter
Standards ‘are key’, they enable interoperability, interchange, economic viability, broader usage, rapid adoption, efficiencies and scale; key frictional impediments we face in today’s world. Most importantly, standards enable sustainable development. To put things in perspective, world travel has existed for centuries; but electric ratings and frequency vary from country to country, forcing travellers to carry universal chargers/adapters to stay connected while travelling for work or leisure. While these have recently evolved into travel/pocket-size gadgets; had we mandated global standards we could eliminate these necessities amongst others. We still accept Metric and Imperial standards across the world. We still use different chargers for our smartphones, e-readers, laptops, tablets, printers, smartwatches with varying standards, connectors and power ratings across device categories by manufacturer. What if each of us had a single universal charger for all our electronic devices, imagine the clutter we could avoid!
Figure 2: Regional nuanced power adapters
The strongholds that oil/fossil fuel lobbyists have over global governments with privatised gains from commoditization of the world’s natural resources have influenced the relaxation of emission standards and auto mileage economy. More importantly, they have prevented the acceleration and adoption of sustainable fuels.
If electric battery specifications had standards, we could have completely moved to electric cars, bikes and scooters across the world decades ago with ‘battery swaps as a service’, drastically reducing carbon emissions, resulting in a healthier and more sustainable world.
What if solar energy standards for adoption were part of a global mandate with a clear roadmap to be followed? We could drastically reduce reliance on electricity generation from coal and nuclear reactors consequently resulting in a dramatic reduction in carbon emissions.
Hindsight is 20–20; it’s important to understand impediments from the past to define and solve for future efficiencies, scale, resilience and reduced cost to people. What if taxation was a function of carbon footprint? Would that make sustainable living a forefront thought?