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Thus far; the good vibes of Klima DAO

Why I’ve come to admire this potential ‘black hole’ for carbon.

3 min read

I’ve had the joy of being an early lurker-participant of the Klima dao discord. The protocol launches soon, and I have come to greatly appreciate the leadership and relative warmth of the pseudonymous team behind it. If you aren’t familiar with Klima DAO yet, it is intending to be a reserve currency like OHM in Olympus dao. Klima dao is built on the same monetary policy (and is endorsed by Olympus), but a key difference is that each KLIMA token is backed by at least one tonne of tokenised carbon offsets held by the Klima treasury. (Have a listen to this podcast episode on bankless for more insight).

Naturally, one ought be incredibly sceptical of all new protocols in web3. I was and still am—but once I understood the intent behind the protocol, I found myself quite enamoured.

Klima dao is not simply being cute with the narrative of being ‘good for the planet’; it actually intends to become a ‘black hole for carbon’. If the Klima DAO works, the result will be an increase in demand for carbon offsets. This increased demand puts an upward pressure on their price, which in renders high-quality carbon offset projects more profitable (whilst incentivising major corporations to actually decarbonise instead of greenwashing via cheap offset purchases).

---btw this summary is from an aptly distilled post in the Klima dao discord by @saiweng_---

Effectively, the dao is looking to do a gamestop on the carbon market. At worst, this could be an amusing distraction; but I think there’s some depth and good intent behind it.

Of course, climate change is an exponential existential threat—a nebulous hyperobject entwined within an already rampant metacrisis set to the backdrop of late capitalism in an already ravaged and dying world. There are no singular ‘solutions’. And I am skeptical about voluntary carbon markets, and the corporations that buy into them. If we could remove all subsidies for fossil fuel mines and companies and price in the externalities of pollution; that would be a good start. Perhaps we can. (But so far Moloch has made it difficult).

In the meantime I applaud any genuine effort to explore ways and means to coordinate at scale; to somehow rise to meet the complexity of our times. It’ll be messy and imperfect; but perhaps we will stumble forward and learn something.

Anyway, the main point of this thread was to simply to acknowledge that the Klima dao vibes are so far quite good. I appreciate discord communities where the devs are present and patient. Where any questions can be asked, and where regular (recorded) AMAs are held. I also appreciate discord communities that are welcoming and kind to newcomers.

I could be hilariously naïve and incorrect here. But it’s nice to think that some discernible impact could be achieved by this project. Perhaps—with the transparency of the blockchain and the generative dialectics encouraged by well governed daos—in time we will see the treasury put towards political lobbying. Or something.

To be honest I’m not entirely sure what the best use of funds would be; but I like how the project already seems to be attracting environmental scientists and engineers; and folks seemingly genuinely enthusiastic to—somehow?—make a difference. The conversations have already been promising thus far.

Trying to ‘do good’ is infinitely harder than simply trying to make money. No matter what you do, you’re going to do it ‘wrong’ and people will find fault. In some ways, it would probably be easier to run an actual scam—everyone would know it as thus, and so it would just become a kind of ponzi game. One of the many yet-another defi-clones to ape into and exit before the rugpull.

But there’s a kind of almost ~antifragile potential to daos. If Klima dao can weather the storm of criticism and critique any attempted good endeavour endures—if it can somehow learn, integrate and grow from any good-natured scrutiny directed at it—then it may become the kind of generative protocols that climate concerned folks (an understatement) like me can warm to. If it continues to attract bright minds—and if it resists the urge to reduce or dumb things down to simplistic ‘save the planet’ narratives; if it can preserve a kind of intelligent, open and engaged rigour—then perhaps it might contribute to the mitigation of climate change. Or at least prove to be a useful experiment in that direction.

Most of this is probably too little, too late—but there’s a certain romance to be found in the attempt. Because: who knows!

I also posted this on twitter, if you’d like to comment.

As ever, none of this is financial advice. I’m a shrimp investor in both Klima and Olympus daos, and I appreciate that you are doing your own research.



A rogue philosopher.