Week 4: Celebrating Earth Week.

On 22nd April this week, the world celebrated Earth Day, with many fora globally reflecting on the need to protect our human species and our mother earth. As the rest of Earth week ensues this week, the discussions on climate change, global emissions, natural disasters, and carbon neutrality are all interwoven with reference to the 4th Industrial Revolution. Relatedly, this years’ theme at WEF in Davos – Globalization 4.0 – largely focused on our interconnectedness as humanity, earth and technology.

Technology has had tremendous impact on humanity, with innovation moving the needle forward for each subsequent generation, and inspiring man to greater heights. Technology has however also accelerated our destructive impact on planet earth, and the unprecedented heat waves, floods and cold winters experienced over the last few years, are often attributed to man’s advancement in technology.

For all the great positive disruptions that the 1st, 2nd and 3rd industrial revolutions have had, the 4th industrial revolution (4IR) with an even greater potential disruption places a critical responsibility on humanity. We are duty bound to employ 4IR and its emerging technologies in order to disrupt the impact of climate change, at a rate faster than climate change is disrupting our very existence. Ranging from the United Nations SDGs, to global movements on green technology, technology for impact, and sustainable technology, there are various initiatives focused on harnessing life- changing technologies in order to impact, and protect our planet. Ideas such as reversing climate change, crowd sourcing snow and forest monitoring, blockchain for monitoring health of harvests, and others, are among the many being considered.

As the Africa Blockchain Conference convenes in Kampala in July, some of our discussions will focus on technology, sustainability and impact, such that as Africa prepares for the 4th Industrial Revolution, we do so while ensuring to innovate and create a future that works for both humanity and for mother earth.

Happy Earth week !