02 Feb 2022

Blockchain For A Better, More Sustainable Supply Chain

Adoption of Sustainable Supply Chain with Blockchain Supply chain sustainability is a main concern for many organizations. The goal is

Blockchain For A Better, More Sustainable Supply Chain

Adoption of Sustainable Supply Chain with Blockchain

Supply chain sustainability is a main concern for many organizations. The goal is to make and maintain long term economic, social, and environmental value for all stakeholders involved in delivering products and services to market. Sustainability becomes one of the major reasons of innovation. Blockchain is an introductory technology that poses a turn in the advancement of supply chain sustainability.

Supply chain transformation through blockchain

The latest improvement in Blockchain technology characterises the disruptive impact of digital innovations on sustainability in supply chain. As we know that Blockchain is defined as a “digital, decentralized and distributed ledger in which transactions are recorded and added in chronological order with the purpose of building permanent and tamper-proof records. Likewise, blockchain technology can also be specified as a distributed database of records, transactions, and digital events that have been executed and shared among networked participants. Blockchain forms great integration links between supply chain partners and allows rapid verification of outsourcing chain partners’ documents.

A favourable application of blockchain is its potential to allocate resources amongst supply chain partners effectively. Therefore, sharing models driven by blockchain technology permit businesses to have visibility into the availability of all underutilized logistics assets (e.g., trucks, vehicles, machinery and equipment, warehouse capacity, etc.). Similarly, blockchain technology has proper digital abilities to build a new world of collaborative and decentralized logistics, which presents a vast network of supply chain actors, matches firms on-demand, and delivers enhanced availability and better utilization of logistics resources. Blockchain technology helps to build a good economic business model and provide benefits of the sharing economy because companies that are based on resource sharing will be under strict monitoring and inspection.

Sustainability With the Help of Blockchain Technology

In many aspects, the adoption of blockchain technology can strengthen the ecological dimension of sustainability by reducing the environmental logistic footprint. With the use of blockchain and smart contracts, it is possible to integrate several environmental protection and control initiatives through the careful monitoring of production parameters such as energy consumption, raw materials processing, and emissions. Blockchain can make easier participation of stakeholders in low-carbon energy initiatives, facilitate the execution of environmental protection programs, and increase consumer access to clean energy. Blockchain technology has the capability to unlock environmentally sustainable manufacturing. Specifically, the use of technology, helps firms determine the materials and products that use non-renewable resources and remove them or invest in alternative renewable and green resources to benefit the circularity of energy. Blockchain drives the transition towards the efficient and sustainable use of energy and the delivery of sustainable products.

The transparency enabled by blockchain could be used to ensure that products are environment friendly. Similarly, the engagement in the blockchain network highlights the commitment of businesses to several environmental issues such as climate change, pollution, and depletion of energy resources. With the help of blockchain, we can also trace the origin of any product. Suppose, we purchase a product from a shop, we need guarantee from the seller that product is safe, has not expired, is accurate, and is also genuine, to ensure that, we need technology to help us. The process to track the origin of products can be done easily using the Internet of things (IoT) combined with blockchain technology. The buyer only needs to scan the package using his smartphone to retrace the supply chain route that the product goes through before it reaches us. This indicate that consumers can now reject a product if its source or ingredients are suspicious or if the trip from the supplier to the retail store changes the quality of the product. We know that the conventional supply chain management system is a centralized SCM system, and it cannot present data in real-time. The data sent will take time for processing and presentation, so the use of blockchain technology allows all members in supply chain to access the network safely and quickly. Since blockchain is a decentralized database, no one controls or owns it and after the data is uploaded to the blockchain, the data cannot be changed and hence cannot be corrupted or faked. Blockchain technology provides an opportunity to improve supply chain operations in a transformable manner by this way consumer can also track that the product is sustainable or not.

Blockchain could foster sustainability by building close environmental cooperation with supply chain partners and allow the firm to efficiently allocate resources based on precise scheduling and real-time data collection from the production processes. Unnecessary processes of transportation can be avoided through collaborative capabilities of blockchain. Supply chain partners would also be able to effectively collaborate and coordinate several actions related to the shipment and transportation of products. Blockchain technology can trace the carbon footprint of products and gives organizations the opportunity to cooperate and trade their carbon assets efficiently in the green-asset markets. Through mapping the overall journey of the product, blockchain can precisely identify the carbon tax to charge on the company. As a result, blockchain technology can significantly contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions and air pollution through accurate and easily traceable greenhouse footprint analysis.

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