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Vienna pilots virtual ‘culture token’ to reward greener travel

The app uses motion-tracking to measure distances covered using green modes of transport and calculates the CO2 savings compared to a car trip.

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From next week, the City of Vienna will run a pilot project to reward climate-friendly travel with free access to cultural events.

 

A virtual token is generated for low-emission activities such as walking, cycling and the use of public transport. The tokens can then be exchanged for tickets from cultural institutions.

 

The blockchain-based app uses motion-tracking to measure distances covered using green modes of transport, and calculates the CO2 savings compared to a car trip. One token corresponds to around 20 kg of CO2, which would take users around two weeks of walking, cycling or using public transport daily to generate.

 

Expansion plans

 

The app is initially being made available to a test community for six months and to begin with, the tokens will be valid for the Vienna Volkstheater, the Vienna Museum, the Kunsthalle and the Wiener Konzerthaus. From autumn, the app will be widely available and more cultural institutions will be included.

 

The city stressed that privacy and data protection are central and said research interests, not those of any commercial companies, are the priority.

 

The city stressed that privacy and data protection are central and said research interests, not those of any commercial companies, are the priority.

 

Belfast is also exploring the use of digital currencies to boost the city economy, meet environmental goals and help citizens become healthier. In May last year, Tel Aviv launched a pilot to examine the feasibility of a digital city currency.

 

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