MIP-B0: Activate Moonwell on Base


Following the successful passage of MIP-39, I propose that the Moonwell community vote to authorize the activation of the Moonwell protocol on Base mainnet, upon public launch on August 9, 2023.

Base is a secure, low-cost, and developer-friendly L2 for decentralized applications and has been incubated by Coinbase in collaboration with Optimism. With the goal of spearheading the next wave of onchain adoption, Base is aiming to create a future of greater financial freedom and inclusivity for all.

By activating Moonwell on Base, we can join in this mission to increase onchain adoption and financial empowerment by bringing our newly redesigned and simplified app to Coinbase users around the world. Base represents a unique opportunity for Moonwell to expand cross-chain interoperability on a value-aligned chain and bring the power of onchain finance to a new generation of crypto users.

About Base

Base is a Layer 2 (L2) blockchain developed on the Ethereum network. Since Base operates as an optimistic rollup, it provides substantial enhancements in scalability compared to L1 Ethereum, while maintaining its security from the Ethereum base layer. Following the testnet launch on February 24, 2023, Base mainnet will open to everyone on August 9, 2023.

Built on Bedrock, the first iteration of the OP Stack, Base leverages Optimism’s frameworks for scalability and development. The OP Stack is a set of MIT-licensed open-source software that anyone can use or fork and represents a vision for Ethereum scalability and modularity. With standardization and modularity, comes the potential for interoperable L2s including Base to manifest into a larger “Superchain”. Base will also contribute to Optimism’s RetroPGF model, incentivizing the development of the open-source public goods that our digital world relies upon.

Coinbase is a proven leader in the digital asset space. After publicizing its onchain ambitions nearly 7 years ago in their “Secret Master Plan,” Base’s release marks the next milestone towards realizing its goal of creating a financial system consisting of decentralized applications on an open and globally accessible network with a user base of one billion people.


Activating Moonwell on Base mainnet offers a number of benefits to the Moonwell community, including opportunities to:

  1. Expand cross-chain interoperability
  2. Unlock a massive target audience, Coinbase users
  3. Build on shared values

Expand cross-chain interoperability

The launch of Base offers an opportunity to connect the entire Dotsama ecosystem with Ethereum in a way that wasn’t possible before. The Moonwell protocol now has the capability of going cross-chain and bringing the best assets from the ecosystem to millions of Coinbase users, including GLMR and DOT.

Since the Moonwell community first activated Moonwell over 18 months ago, we have pursued the goal of connecting the Polkadot and Kusama ecosystems to the world of onchain finance. The Moonwell community also shares the Moonbeam vision of connected smart contracts with EVM as the base layer. This vision is supported by the cross-chain integrations and features available on Moonbeam, like the Wormhole message passing protocol, which allows for Moonwell to expand to Base, reaching even more people.

Unlock a massive target audience, Coinbase users

Base represents a massive target audience for Moonwell — Coinbase’s millions of verified users. Coinbase’s retail mobile app now includes a “web3” tab that enables Coinbase users to easily interact with onchain apps like Moonwell and move assets across the ecosystem.

Activating Moonwell on Base represents an opportunity to expose up to 110m users to the world of onchain finance and familiarize them with our existing activations on Moonbeam and Moonriver. As one of the first projects to activate on Base, Moonwell will enjoy early mover benefits (specifically in attracting sufficient liquidity) and join a community of web3 giants like Sushiswap, Chainlink, Balancer, and Wormhole.

Build on shared values

With the unveiling of Moonwell’s newly redesigned and streamlined app, the Moonwell community has reaffirmed its commitment to inclusivity and accessibility. These values are aligned with the Base ethos of “Base is for everyone” and Coinbase’s long-held desire to create an open and global cryptoeconomy.

Our intuitive, user-friendly app has been designed to break down the barriers that have historically made DeFi seem complex and intimidating to many. By bringing the new Moonwell app to Base, we can help to increase financial freedom throughout the world and empower the next generation of onchain adopters.


The implementation of this proposal is comprised of the following steps: (Note that due to the cross-chain nature of this proposal, the governance portal doesn’t currently display each individual step.)

  1. Accepting Admin on Moonwell Base Contracts:
  • Invoke the acceptAdmin function on Moonwell’s Base contracts, assigning governance rights to the Moonwell Temporal Governor.
    • Similar privileges are assigned to GovernorAlpha on Moonwell’s Moonbeam and Moonriver deployments.
  1. Setting Borrow and Supply Cap Guardian:
  • In alignment with Gauntlet’s “Initial Recommendations for Moonwell on Base and Cap Guardianship” Snapshot proposal, Gauntlet’s multisig address will be assigned borrow and supply cap guardianship.
  • This new role allows for Gauntlet to promptly modify borrow and supply caps in response to market risk events, onchain DEX liquidity fluctuations, and changes in liquidity pool usage.
  • Gauntlet’s borrow and supply cap guardianship will only be enacted for Moonwell’s deployment on Base. More information can be found in this forum post.
  1. Unpausing Mint on Moonwell’s Base Markets:
  • The mint function will be unpaused on Moonwell’s Base markets.
  • The markets supported at launch are: ETH, USDC (USDbC), and cbETH.
  • This will enable users to supply or deposit assets into these new markets once the proposal has been executed on Base.
  1. Minting mTokens to address a potential “Hundred Finance” exploit:
  • A small quantity of mTokens (Moonwell collateral tokens) will be minted and transferred to a designated burn address.
  • This proactive measure is intended to mitigate any potential risks associated with the Hundred Finance exchange rate exploit.
  1. Establishing Governance Guardians:
  • Introduction of Moonwell Governance Guardians as a protective measure, having discrete powers to halt Temporal Governance if an illegitimate proposal is queued into the Wormhole timelock.
  • This role will be supported by a multisig, requiring three of the five Governance Guardians to pause Temporal Governance.
    • The Governance Guardian multisig has been created and can be viewed here.

Moonwell Governance Guardians

Moonwell’s Base deployment is designed to be governed by WELL token holders from Moonbeam Network. This innovative approach is facilitated by Temporal Governance, which enables cross-chain governance via the Wormhole message passing protocol.

  • Temporal Governance:

    • A newly developed and audited contract that leverages the Wormhole protocol.
    • Facilitates cross-chain verification and execution of Moonwell Improvement Proposals on Base.
  • Timelock Requirement:

    • An additional 24-hour timelock is imposed after a proposal’s successful passage on Moonbeam before it may be executed on Base.
    • This timelock period enables the Wormhole Guardians to confirm that the proposal was indeed successful, providing an extra layer of security and validation.
  • Governance Guardian Role:

    • Proposed as a safeguard against potential exploitation of the Wormhole bridge or compromise of the Wormhole Guardians.
    • The Moonwell Governance Guardian role will have limited powers, including:
      • Pausing Temporal Governance to prevent a malicious, queued proposal from executing on Base.
      • Executing a valid, successful proposal while Temporal Governance is paused.
    • The Moonwell Governance Guardian multisig will require 3 of the 5 Governance Guardians to agree in order to pause Temporal Governance or execute a valid proposal.
    • If Temporal Governance is ever paused:
      • Governance Guardians cannot unpause. A Moonwell Improvement Proposal will be required to unpause Temporal Governance.
      • Governance Guardians will be unable to pause Temporal Governance again until a new Moonwell Improvement Proposal reassigns the Governance Guardian role.
      • Temporal governance can be permissionlessly unpaused after a significant time delay of 30 days, mitigating the risk of a malicious or prolonged pause.
    • The Moonwell community is able to vote to revoke Moonwell Governance Guardianship through the passage of a Moonwell Improvement Proposal.

TLDR: The Governance Guardian role only exists in case Wormhole is attacked and the attacker submits a proposal that DID NOT successfully pass Moonwell governance. In that rare event, the guardians can pause within 24 hours to prevent the attack from taking place.

The following Moonwell contributors and community members have generously volunteered to be the initial set of Moonwell Governance Guardians:


The decision to activate Moonwell on Base is a significant one and I strongly encourage every Moonwell community member to vote:

  • Yes: Activate Moonwell on Base mainnet, create the Moonwell Governance Guardian role, unpause (to activate) Moonwell markets on Base, burn mTokens to prevent a “Hundred Finance” style exploit, and designate of Gauntlet as borrow and supply cap guardian.
  • No: Make no changes—keep the Moonwell protocol as is, without activating on the Base mainnet at this time.


Activating the Moonwell protocol on Base is a crucial step towards broadening and developing the Moonwell community and bringing easy-to-use onchain finance to Coinbase users around the world. The prospect of enhancing Moonwell’s accessibility and linking the Polkadot and Kusama ecosystems to Ethereum through Moonwell’s Base deployment, particularly at this early stage, is so exciting.

In short, activating Moonwell on Base provides a can’t-miss opportunity to boost cross-chain interoperability and expand our global community. We will have the opportunity to bring the power of onchain finance to new users around the world while remaining firmly rooted in our core values of security, transparency, and decentralization.


Vote is live HERE. Voting ends on Monday, August 7, 2023.