The Australia zoo wildlife conservatory, known for its connection to the famous wildlife conservationist Steve Irwin, jumped to the NFT bandwagon and announced releasing NFTs with Algorand to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Wildlife Warriors conservation project.
NFTs are essentially digital artworks that are non-interchangeable units of data stored on a blockchain as a digital ledger, which one can sell and trade online. Consumers have been skeptical of NFTs because of the high cost of entry, a hazy route to return on investment, and the potential environmental risks associated with crypto mining.
The Australia zoo has ventured into its maiden NFT project in partnership with Meadow Lands, a new Australia-based start-up. These NFTs can be purchased via cash through the on-ramping platform MoonPay.
The customers will receive randomly generated, utility-driven, unique images of Australian zoo wildlife warrior animals. These are aimed to raise funds for the conservation of Australian Wildlife.
Wildlife Warriors was founded in 2002 by the renowned conservationist late Steve Irwin and his wife, Terry Irwin, to safeguard wounded or endangered wildlife and collaborate with others dedicated to the same aim.
“This green chain and new technology allow us a new avenue to continue to fight for the protection of our wildlife and wild places,” explained Robert Irwin, son of late Steve Irwin, while sharing his thoughts about why the Irwin family decided to take up this venture.
Algorand claims to be 100% carbon negative
Amidst the criticism for environmentally harmful practices, the NFT project of Australia zoo with blockchain Algorand is bound to raise questions about the endeavor’s ethics.
While NFTs are notorious for causing severe environmental harm because they operate on blockchain, Algorand has recently announced to be 100% carbon negative and charges minimal gas and transaction fees converted into carbon credits.
On April 21, 2022, Algorand proclaimed that it had introduced smart contracts to make its operations carbon-negative on the occasion of Earth Day. According to its official website, Algorand will use these advanced smart contracts and “Lock the equivalent amount of carbon credit as an ASA (Algorand Standard Asset) into a green treasury to keep its protocol operating as carbon-negative.”
Australia Zoo would not be the first organization to partner with Algorand for the conservation efforts. Touting itself as an eco-friendly technology, Algorand has been adopted by many institutions focused on sustainability, including ClimateTrade, PlanetWatch, and GlobalCarbon Holding.
Clearly, Algorand has been able to leverage its green footprint as an edge to woo potential investors. Algorand is one of several blockchains projecting themselves as a better alternative for crypto projects like decentralized finance (DeFi), NFTs, and micropayments. It is partially because of their proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus mechanism, which consumes only a tiny percentage of the energy compared to the Proof of Work (PoW) model used by top cryptocurrencies like bitcoin.
The Rising Popularity of NFTs
Admittedly, NFTs are slowly winning favor among the general population and are more actively being adopted by brands, celebrities, and even politicians for marketing and connecting with a younger audience. Shrina Kurani, a Democrat, competing for a seat in California’s 41st Congressional District, used NFTs to raise awareness for her campaign and promote climate-friendly Web3 solutions. So did the winning presidential candidate for South Korea. Notably, Algorand also recently became FIFA world cup’s official blockchain.
As for the Wildlife Warriors, founded by the reputed conservationist Steve Irwin aka “The Crocodile Hunter,” launching NFTs serves as a way to incorporate technology for wildlife conservation and protection.
According to Adriana Belotti, head of Communities Australia, Algorand Foundation, “It’s incredible to see Australia Zoo and Meadow Labs carry wildlife conservation fundraising to the Algorand blockchain because it actually suits our core worth of sustainability.”
“I’m certain that gathering these NFTs will resonate with everybody who has a delicate spot for the long-lasting Aussie wildlife, each right here and overseas,” she added.
The transactions are processed via a ‘sensible contract’ wherein 100 percent of significant gross sales will be transferred to Australia Zoo. Further clarifications and details on the release date for the NFT series will be made public in the coming weeks.