Local Currency Goes City-Wide and High-tech

Bristol Pound/Video screen capture

Earlier this year my original hometown of Bristol, England—known for its giant urban wind turbines, virtual orchards and ambitious plans for zero waste—took another step to the greener side.

It launched its own currency. And it did so by putting some serious resources behind it.

As Christine already noted in her detailed post about the launch of the Bristol Pound—we shouldn't be fooled by the counter cultural nod to graffiti artist Banksy—this bold experiment is being hailed by some experts as a turning point in the local currency movement.

The fact that The Bristol Pound is accepted for paying business taxes and backed by a legitimate financial institution already makes it immensely more practical than the more informal currency schemes—as does the high-tech approach to currency printing, account management and mobile apps.

But the proof will, of course, be in the spending. How will a currency like this change people's buying habits? This latest video from the group behind the Bristol Pound explains their vision. I'll be reaching out to friends and family back home to see how (and if) this vision translates into reality.

Tags: Bristol | Cities | Economics | Local Food | resilience | United Kingdom

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