EU Blockchain Observatory Publishes Recommendations for Blockchain Sustainability

The European Union Blockchain Observatory and Forum (EUBOF) has outlined a number of recommendations on how to improve the development of blockchain technology, including setting standards to enhance the nascent technology’s interoperability and scalability.

Published March 6, the report dubbed “Scalability, Interoperability and Sustainability of Blockchains” was prepared by tech firm ConsenSys in partnership with the EUBOF, a two-year initiative spearheaded by the European Commission in February 2018.

The report was submitted to the European Union in an effort to offer insights into blockchain technology’s present and potential future state in Europe, by taking shareholders’ input into account.

Based on the recommendations, the author posited that “we can expect that over time it will become easier and easier for disparate blockchains to work together. This will be to the benefit of the ecosystem as a whole.”

Furthermore, the report also underscored the need for basic research and implementation of projects that would support the technology’s infrastructure.

As detailed in the report:

“Currently the EU is active in supporting blockchain research in a number of ways, from the EU Blockchain Observatory & Forum […] to the allocation of up to EUR 340 million [$382 million] to support blockchain projects through 2020 under the Horizon 2020 programme. While these are laudable, the EU should not rest on its laurels. Both the U.S. and China have expressed strong support for blockchain research, with the former even going so far as to include it as part of its USD 700 billion defence budget.”

In addition to setting standards to improve blockchain technology’s scalability and interoperability, the report also advised policymakers and industry players to collaborate in developing and enhancing blockchain technology and its governance. To that end, the report recommended that the EU adopts a wait-and-see approach to allow projects to both learn and experiment with the nascent technology prior to setting standards and introducing regulations related to governance.

As the report further recommended, policymakers should equally support research initiatives as well as fiat currency on-chain for the facilitation of blockchain-based transactions.

In addition, the EUBOF also stressed the need to resolve prevailing conflicts between General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), blockchain technology, as well as digital currencies’ legal status.