Home builders

Rhode Island Offers Crypto Rewards for Green Home Builders

A bill has been proposed in the Rhode Island House of Representatives that would credit a homebuilder in a “green coin” cryptocurrency for reducing the carbon footprint of the project.

The law on public-private partnership for green housing obligate the state utility commission to publish annual reports on utility costs and carbon emissions from a housing project. If the project was able to reduce its utility costs, the state will issue a cryptocurrency credit to the property owner.

“Any utility cost reduction amount attributable to any housing construction project under this chapter will be given a credit amount, which credit may be repaid in the form of cryptocurrency in the form of a green coin .”

Funds for the initiative are said to come from $500 million in donations from local private banks and $125 million from the state, known as the “Green Housing Fund.”

It is unclear which blockchain network the Green Coin would use, but it would likely be a less expensive proof-of-stake (PoS) network preferred by mainstream environmentalists these days.

The Green Housing Public-Private Partnership Act in Rhode Island

The bill is designed to address both the surge in demand for housing in the Ocean State and to further incentivize homebuilders to stay in compliance with environmental standards. The proposal states:

“Immediate action to develop housing to green site standards is imperative to ensure compliance with the objectives set by the climate law.

The newly proposed bill aims to spur new housing developments in the state which is suffering from a housing shortage exacerbated by rising prices year on year, according to to a report by local media The Providence Journal.

Redfin Housing Data Tracker confirmed that Rhode Island’s housing supply has been in a steady decline for the past five years, with February 2022 marking a five-year low.

Related: Go green or go home? What the New York State Mining Moratorium Could Mean for the Crypto Industry

Although the Rhode Island Legislature’s plan to reward environmentally conscious builders with crypto is fairly new, crypto in the housing market is not a new idea. It is increasingly common to take out crypto mortgages to help pay for homes.

The USDC.homes program provided a loan to a new homeowner in Austin, Texas late last month, denominated in USD Coin (USDC) on the Polygon network. The unsecured loan works the same as traditional loans, but the down payment, also made in crypto, is staked to earn the borrower’s interest, which can be used to help repay the principal.

Bacon Protocol has been issuing non-fungible tokenized (NFT) mortgages since last November and has interest rates well below the national average of 5.5%.