Note: SEEDS is an open-source, decentralized, citizen-governed & evolved financial system. It is not owned by Hypha (the organisation behind these articles). Just like Bitcoin, SEEDS operates on a distributed network. However, unlike Bitcoin, it is orders of magnitude more energy efficient and is able to be governed and evolved directly by those who contribute to its success.
A regenerative financial system for a thriving global civilization
“Our long-run prosperity and our very survival both depend on nothing less than this once-in-the-history-of-civilization transformation to a regenerative civilization based on a holistic worldview.”
— John Fullerton Regenerative Capitalism
Growing a regenerative financial system
First, Seeds (the currency of SEEDS) are created without debt and interest attached to them.
This means that SEEDS, as a financial system, does not require endless growth on a finite planet to maintain itself (to prevent widespread bankruptcies, poverty and depressions).
“The economic cycles of boom and bust, depressions and recessions are not natural phenomena — they are a symptom of a diseased financial model.” — SEEDS White Deck
Our dominant financial systems grow by transforming our natural world (and converting what was once free) into money.
Further they routinely (as we’re experiencing now — mid 2020) go through periods of depression that harm communities, people all while concentrating wealth.
The growth of SEEDS is not dependent through transforming our natural world and cultural gifts into money — but by transitioning out of degenerative financial systems (national currency) as people leave the current systems and enter regenerative financial systems (such as SEEDS).
To say another way, SEEDS grows when people leave (and shrink) existing financial systems to join SEEDS — not through increasing the exploitation of people and planet (as our current money systems do)>
This provides humanity an non-violent and gentle way to opt-into healthier systems.
Our current financial systems relentlessly create new money, driving the value of the currency down. This is a subtle and profound distribution of wealth from the masses that hold the currency to the minority who benefit from its creation and buy up assets.
Seeds are fundamentally unique in that they’re only created to replace destroyed Seeds and/or to meet new demand. This removes the artificial scarcity built into our current financial systems and replaces it with protocols that ensure we have exactly as much money as we need to exchange, no more (hyper-inflation) and no less (financial depressions).
The circulating supply of Seeds fluctuate to match demand — this facilitates “intrinsic stability” in the value of Seeds — which can allow Seeds to become a superior unit of account over the USD (losing 3–12% of purchasing power year over year) and alternatives such as Bitcoin (which exhibits extreme volatility, concentrates wealth and is a massive energy waste).
Imagine if the 12+ trillion USD central banks made in the last decade wasn’t spent on subsidizing dirty industry (5.2 Trillion in a single year subsidizing oil and gas), warfare, bailing out banks and other myopic waste. But, was used to reward those who are truly making the world a better place and to regenerate and beautify our planet.
What if the people had a direct voice in how this money was used?
What could we do with it?
Regenerative local food as a foundation for a Regenerative Civilization
“The destiny of nations depends on how they nourish themselves.”
— Jean Brillat-Savarin, Food Philosopher
… and in today’s global civilization — it’s no longer just the destiny of nations.
Today the destiny of all of humanity, and countless species on our planet rests on humanity’s ability to transition into regenerative food systems and better nourish ourselves and Earth.
“It is the low-quality toxic food that we are regularly consuming that is preventing us from reaching our own personal potential. Just as it’s our collective food systems that are preventing humanity from reaching our collective potential. If we transform what we eat and how we cultivate it, we’ll transform our entire society.” — SEEDS White Deck
SEEDS starts with the understanding that it’s our global industrial and degenerative food systems that are the foundations for the decline of our personal and planetary health.
Many of the early architects of SEEDS are heavily influenced and inspired by Permaculture, Regenerative Agriculture and the necessity to heal ourselves and our planet through healthier food and food systems.
This is where SEEDS was born, as a financial system to fund, promote and facilitate the transition into regenerative and local food systems. While simultaneously growing from this foundation to meet the rest of our needs and desires in a healthy, regenerative and cooperative way.
Facilitating a regenerative economy
SEEDS doesn’t stop at food. Food is the foundation, just as food is the foundation of any civilization.
SEEDS is designed to finance, reward and facilitate the creation of a regenerative economy — by rewiring the incentives built into our current economies.
SEEDS accomplishes this by how it distributes new currency as the movement grows. The aim here is to serve as the financial layer that unites, aligns and delivers value to the enormous collection of movements and organisations that are serving the transition to a regenerative civilization.
Note: If Bitcoin was designed as SEEDS it would have distributed $150+billion worth of wealth over its short life to finance and reward regeneration.
The most exciting function of Seeds is in how the new currency is distributed. “New currency” being the new Seeds that are created to replace any destroyed currency or when the economy is growing.
“Now there is money for all the projects that are required to heal our planet, but aren’t necessarily profitable. Replanting native forests (with no intention to cut them down), making our rivers drinkable again, growing food forests in our cities to give away free food…” — SEEDS White Deck
Short Term - Starting Jan 2020
1. Financing a regenerative global alliance
SEEDS starts by recognizing and rewarding those who are already serving the transition towards a Regenerative Society and providing financial incentives and rewards to participate in this global movement.
For this reason the majority of Seeds are not for sale. They need to be earned through contributions, co-creation and alliance.
For the first year (From now until mid 2021) Seeds are fixed in supply and are designed to increase in value with adoption. The intent is for this value increase to go to those who are best serving people and our planet!
For this reason, its beneficial to be one of the first organisations to receive a grant to be able to get the highest possible value from it.
Running Regenerative Campaigns and Forming Regenerative Alliances
Campaigns that anyone can participate in
35% of the initial supply of Seeds is reserved as gifts for the world — to give to those who are serving the transition towards a healthier civilization.
- Proof of Food — Rewarding local food producers with the “#ProofofFood” campaign.
2. Plant Seeds Get Seeds — Rewarding people for planting trees, gardens and helping to restore our planets forests. #PlantSeedsGetSeeds
3. Good Deeds Get Seeds — Rewarding people who are doing good in the world — this can be through nominations or self admissions. #GoodDeedsGetSeeds
4. Any other campaigns the Citizens of SEEDS decide to run.
Aligned partnerships for organisations
Any organisation who is serving people and our planet — or otherwise dedicated to making the world a more beautiful and healthy place can apply for an alliance with SEEDS.
These organisations will receive a wide variety of benefits (see here for more) — not least of which is a grant in Seeds that recognizes the value that organisations are bringing to create a Regenerative Civilization. In addition, these organisations will receive Seeds to gift to their communities for supporting them and the movement as a whole.
SEEDS has over $3.7 million USD (in Jan 2020 value) in Seeds to grant to organisations.
This whole process is governed directly by all the Citizens of SEEDS through an easy to use app — that’s called ‘the SEEDS Passport’ (click here on your phone to download).
2. Funding the regenerative movement by direct grants and loans to bioregions
Part of the Seeds for campaigns (~11M USD in Jan 2020 values) is intended to finance and support:
- permaculture & regeneration education facilities;
- seed banks;
- community gardens;
- tool & sharing libraries
- interest-free loans for regenerative businesses
- roles for regenerative practitioners (tree planters, educators, movement-makers, etc)
- and more.
Citizens in SEEDS decide what and who gets funding; from the local food movement to the regenerative energy and housing industries and anything else the movement decides.
Important reminder: SEEDS is run directly by the Citizens as a whole. It’s not governed by a single organisation for the benefit of that organisation, anyone can join SEEDS and has an equal opportunity to contribute and gain value.
SEEDS is a tool gifted to humanity to aid our transition to a healthier global civilization.
Medium Term - Starting ~mid 2021
1. Better-than-free & regenerative organisations
Today’s financial system punishes businesses who are taking the extra steps to account for people and planet. This punishment comes in the form of reduced sales and lower margins. This is a serious flaw that SEEDS remedies.
Organisations who are regenerating our planet, or otherwise using the most ethical practices, earn additional rewards for participating in SEEDS while those who are “degenerative” lose rewards they would have otherwise earned.
SEEDS aligns financial incentives with regenerative behaviors and offers a financial justification for businesses to adopt regenerative practices.
Better than free
Organisations earn rewards for the volume of Seeds they facilitate being traded through their platform (e.g. sales). This means the more people use a business the more revenue that business makes (without needing to charge fees).
For example, peer to peer food exchanging platforms (such as Open Food Network) earn revenue without the need to charge fees. This can subsidize the expansion of these networks and the movement as a whole as we can undercut the prices charged by conventional food ordering (degenerative) options.
To help conceptualize this. It would be as if the Federal Reserve gave 1 trillion USD of the 6+ trillion made in the last decade to businesses that are serving the regenerative movement.
Rewarding regenerative reputations
Organisations in SEEDS earn revenue for obtaining and maintaining a positive “Regenerative Reputation Score”. These scores are given to organisations by all the members of SEEDS and a consortium of non-profit organisations. These ratings are based off a series of regenerative standards set by the Citizens of SEEDS.
Organisations that obtain a 0 or negative score (degenerative) earn no rewards from SEEDS regardless of how much they otherwise contribute.
This heavily biases the rewards towards organisations that are doing the most good for the world.
As SEEDS grows in momentum and value this reward can be substantial and provide the desperately needed financial incentives and compensation for making the changes required to heal our planet.
More rewards when you shop regeneratively
Members of SEEDS earn rewards when they make their purchases in Seeds. These rewards are multiplied by the regenerative reputation of the organisation.
This encourages people to support more regenerative organisations as they earn more rewards.
Further, this could provide more business to those organisations — further incentivizing them to adopt regenerative behaviors.
2. Support the local food and sharing economy movements by making more profitable and practical peer-to-peer (P2P) platforms
A common failure of many P2P (peer to peer) platforms is that people avoid the platform if it charges fees, or use it to make the initial connection but pay direct after. This is especially true of applications that facilitate routine interactions (as local food applications would).
Creating a local food system will inevitably create a network of people who are making routine interactions with each other. We do eat several times a day after all…
Why would Kim keep using the platform (and pay fees) to buy carrot cake from her neighbour Raphael— she’ll likely just pay him in cash.
Seeds is better than cash. No fees! Rewards for you and the causes you care about when you spend it.
P2P apps that use Seeds are able to earn revenue by facilitating these P2P exchanges without taking a cut. This means that as people develop routine and consistent purchases with their neighbours through these platforms won’t have an incentive to avoid the platform. As it would actually be better to use the app (and pay in Seeds) than it would be to pay with national currencies directly.
SEEDS provides revenue for the teams behind these applications, so they can be rewarded for serving the movement without needing to charge fees, sell data, advertise or any other common exploit.
California recently legalized selling meals right out of the home. SEEDS can fuel the platforms that emerge to serve this new and expanding global movement towards locally grown food and home-cooked meals.
Further SEEDS unleashes the untapped potential of the sharing economy renaissance. It facilitates the rise of these platforms without the traditional exploits plaguing current platform behemoths.
3. Grants for regenerative projects
Imagine if part of the 12+ trillion USD central banks made in the last decade (and several trillion’s made at the start of 2020) was put into a pool for organisations to request funding from. This is what happens in SEEDS, part of any new money created is earmarked as ‘grants for regenerative projects’.
The Citizens of SEEDS vote for which projects they’d like to see funded and anyone can propose funding for their regenerative projects.
From replanting native forests and making rivers drinkable again to setting up community food forests and restoring the commons — anything is possible.
As SEEDS grows, the amount of money we can direct towards these projects grows with it. This is a complete reversal to our present financial system that grows through degenerating our world…
…SEEDS grows while regenerating it.
4. Interest free loans for transitioning into and joining the regenerative agriculture movement
Our current financial systems heavily subsidize our degenerative industrial agriculture systems.
We need a financial system that subsidizes regenerative agriculture!
SEEDS subsidizes the transition from degenerative agriculture (industrial & petrochemical based) to regenerative agriculture (permaculture and local).
Another portion of new money created is reserved as interest free loans for regenerative projects. While the grants are reserved for not-for-profit endeavors these loans are for for-profit organisations, families and groups.
Repayment on these loans don’t begin until after 1.5+ years. This gives ample time to transition to regenerative methods — providing more flexibility and support than the current options. Further, if they need to extend the payment date, they can simply ask their local community for an extension. For, its the Citizens of the community themselves who administer and benefit from these loans.
These loans come from a pool of money that local communities direct. This creates a closed financing loop. Meaning the people who vote to award a loan to a local grower, now have a vested financial interest in that grower succeeding and repaying the loan. This may lead to more support for that grower as the local community may buy from them opposed to degenerative options.
The best part is, none of this money needs to come out of your pocket. It all becomes possible when the people gain control (and the benefits from) of a financial system that actually serves us.
These funds are to finance and support the entire regenerative movement from regenerative housing and energy to food and soil production education and beyond.
Long Term - 2021 and beyond
The tools mentioned up until now are already in place. The tools mentioned in this section are speculative and are being built now.
Further, after 2021 all developments in SEEDS will happen through decentralized governance by all the Citizens of SEEDS.
With all this said, we’ll share an idea that is possible with SEEDS should Citizens chose to adopt it.
1. Reward use and lifespan over one off purchases.
Today companies make money for selling things. Even if the people who buy those things never use them. This creates incentives to manipulate people into thinking they need something they will never use. Our global civilization spends exorbitant amounts of money on advertising to sell useless stuff and storage units to store it.
This also comes with another incentive called “planned obsolescence”. This is the practice of building items to break down so that people have to continue to buy more. We can blame organisations for this behaviour, or we can blame a system that encourages this behaviour.
If the rewards were for use, not just purchase, then companies can earn more when they make things that people will actually use and need, not just buy.
With this the incentive can shift to making things that will last a long time — so they can make more money off each item they make. We can transition into this simply by providing the rewards for this behaviour and letting competition drive down purchase price to near zero as “per use” revenue rises.
Further, this has the added effect of rewarding the creation of a sharing economy.
As businesses get paid for use of their products — they would prefer to make one item (less cost) that is used by many people (more usage revenue).
It’s subtle shifts in our financial and economic incentives that can have profound impacts on the overall outcome of our collective and global systems.
This change and many more become possible when, we the people, gain the ability to evolve and govern the financial systems that permeate our lives.
If we only had a say…
The UN estimates that on the high end it would cost $267 billion a year to end world hunger for the 800+ million in need.
Humanity could end world hunger 18 times over, using just the subsidies given to oil and gas.
Granted this math is simplified, and there are other factors. But, the fact remains we could do it, and likely humanity would chose to end world hunger if we actually had control of our financial systems and value flows.
Now for the most potent part
On top of all this — Seeds has an unfair advantage over all alternatives opposed to charging fees for exchanging (or even being free) members of SEEDS are rewarded for their financial exchanges.
Making Seeds a world’s first “better than free” currency.
This is how we drive mass adoption towards regeneration. By aligning financial incentives (more revenue) with systemic regeneration.
This is all happening now and you can be a part of it.
For any nascent financial system to succeed it needs people who are using it.
If you have or represent a business, movement or organisation come join our growing alliance organisations and get rewarded for joining the movement.
The only thing standing in the way of a regenerative civilization is our collective beliefs and actions.
If this is something you’d like to support — then come get paid for supporting and co-creating this transition. One of the benefits of creating a new financial system, is that work doesn’t have to be pro-bono. All contributions are acknowledged and compensated!
Let’s create a more beautiful world, not because we have to, but because we can.
This article was written by Hypha — one of the organisations serving the SEEDS movement.