$ Bitcoin consumes 'more electricity than Argentina' - The rising value of Bitcoin leads to ever-higher energy consumption, researchers say.

Ahriman

Vivere Militare Est.
kiwifarms.net

1613943540786.png

The University of Cambridge's online tool estimates Bitcoin's annual electricity consumption is more than The Netherlands, United Arab Emirates and Argentina

Bitcoin uses more electricity annually than the whole of Argentina, analysis by Cambridge University suggests.

"Mining" for the cryptocurrency is power-hungry, involving heavy computer calculations to verify transactions.

Cambridge researchers say it consumes around 121.36 terawatt-hours (TWh) a year - and is unlikely to fall unless the value of the currency slumps.

Critics say electric-car firm Tesla's decision to invest heavily in Bitcoin undermines its environmental image.

The currency's value hit a record $48,000 (£34,820) this week. following Tesla's announcement that it had bought about $1.5bn bitcoin and planned to accept it as payment in future.

But the rising price offers even more incentive to Bitcoin miners to run more and more machines.

And as the price increases, so does the energy consumption, according to Michel Rauchs, researcher at The Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance, who co-created the online tool that generates these estimates.

“It is really by design that Bitcoin consumes that much electricity,” Mr Rauchs told BBC’s Tech Tent podcast. “This is not something that will change in the future unless the Bitcoin price is going to significantly go down."

1613943575139.png


The online tool has ranked Bitcoin’s electricity consumption above Argentina (121 TWh), the Netherlands (108.8 TWh) and the United Arab Emirates (113.20 TWh) - and it is gradually creeping up on Norway (122.20 TWh).

The energy it uses could power all kettles used in the UK for 27 years, it said.

However, it also suggests the amount of electricity consumed every year by always-on but inactive home devices in the US alone could power the entire Bitcoin network for a year.


Mining Bitcoin


In order to "mine" Bitcoin, computers - often specialised ones - are connected to the cryptocurrency network.

They have the job of verifying transactions made by people who send or receive Bitcoin.

This process involves solving puzzles, which, while not integral to verifying movements of the currency, provide a hurdle to ensure no-one fraudulently edits the global record of all transactions.

As a reward, miners occasionally receive small amounts of Bitcoin in what is often likened to a lottery.

To increase profits, people often connect large numbers of miners to the network - even entire warehouses full of them.

That uses lots of electricity because the computers are more or less constantly working to complete the puzzles.

The University of Cambridge tool models the economic lifetime of the world's Bitcoin miners and assumes that all the Bitcoin mining machines worldwide are working with various efficiencies.

Using an average electricity price per kilowatt hour ($0.05) and the energy demands of the Bitcoin network, it is then possible to estimate how much electricity is being consumed at any one time.


Environmental conundrum


“Bitcoin is literally anti-efficient,” David Gerard, author of Attack of the 50 Foot Blockchain, explained. “So more efficient mining hardware won't help - it'll just be competing against other efficient mining hardware.

“This means that Bitcoin's energy use, and hence its CO2 production, only spirals outwards.

“It’s very bad that all this energy is being literally wasted in a lottery.”

The price of Bitcoin rose rapidly on Monday after Tesla announced its investment.

But commentators say the investment clashes with the electric car firm's previous environmental stance.

“Elon Musk has thrown away a lot of Tesla's good work promoting energy transition,” Mr Gerard said. “This is very bad... I don't know how he can walk this back effectively.

"Tesla got $1.5bn in environmental subsidies in 2020, funded by the taxpayer.

"It turned around and spent $1.5bn on Bitcoin, which is mostly mined with electricity from coal. Their subsidy needs to be examined."

A carbon tax on cryptocurrencies could be introduced to balance out some of the negative consumption, Mr Gerard suggested.




It's all fun and games until someone sets up a nuclear-powered datacenter.
 

Cup Noodle

Too drunk to live. Too autistic to die.
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
“So more efficient mining hardware won't help - it'll just be competing against other efficient mining hardware.
Is it just me or does this not make sense. As a altcoin miner efficiency is definitely a consideration when I'm looking to buy equipment. It's a balance of cost vs efficiency vs hashrate. If I can get great hashrates but it costs more for electricity than I'm earning it doesn't make any sense.
 

Kosher Dill

Potato Chips
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
Regardless of the content of the article, I think the message that we should learn is that China is seriously damaging the enviroment and all global warming efforts should be directed at it.
And really, most of the "Bitcoin" column in that chart should be added to China, since oriental electric thievery is the basis of the cryptomining economy.
 

HOMO FOR LIFE

flaunting her autism like a title of nobility
kiwifarms.net
And really, most of the "Bitcoin" column in that chart should be added to China, since oriental electric thievery is the basis of the cryptomining economy.
I am thinking of setting up a mining shop at work. My boss doesn't know shit about what I do in my office so I am pretty confident about getting free electricity.
 

gata

kiwifarms.net
Yeah I've seen some people trying to shame artists using NFTs by doing the "its bad for the environment!1!1" spiel and I'm still illiterate on crypto to understand but I'm skeptical if it's true. I'm also seeing "environment friendly crypto/NFT developments" on social media so that's a good thing I guess.
 

Carlos Weston Chantor

Experienced For Barb's Pleasure
kiwifarms.net
If bitcoin was actually this giant evil machine consuming insane amounts of coal to vomit pitch black clouds of smoke covering the earth in perpetual darkness it would be kinda cool, unfortunately over 75% of bitcoin mining is done using renewable energy sources
 

TheRedChair

Ultimate Chaos, Ultimate Confort.
kiwifarms.net
Yeah I've seen some people trying to shame artists using NFTs by doing the "its bad for the environment!1!1" spiel and I'm still illiterate on crypto to understand but I'm skeptical if it's true. I'm also seeing "environment friendly crypto/NFT developments" on social media so that's a good thing I guess.
There is nothing environmentally friendly when dealing with Bitcoin.

It's like saying that Electric Cars are eco Friendly. Right now they definitely not eco friendly in its creation. If you show how much environmental damage of getting the rare earth material out of the strip mines and being processed to those treehugging hipsters driving their Eco cars... they might have convulsions... but probably they will go into denial.

Because I know ChinaLand.... these fuckers will ass rape their environment to gain a few dollars in their pocket AND THEN blame the Americans (or the Australians, or the Japanese, etc) for their problem.
But Argentina doesn't have electricity.
God.... In the early to mid 2000's Latin America had a chance of getting out of their shit whole that they dug themselves in the late 80's.

To think I knew first hand the 4th wealthiest family in Venezuela, when that country was the envy of the entire Latin American Culture. To see it now is a travesty. The same goes for Argentina as it was famous for it's beef market. The only stable country down there is Chile. And you DON"T want to mess with them as I believe they have the strongest military in Latin America. Love that Prussian Tradition.

 

knobslobbin

survivorship bias
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
The eco-nannies are only *starting* with crypto. Once they find a way to attack that works they always go for broke.

I wonder if anyone has calculated what the world wide electricity consumption is for video gaming? Or what the gas consumption would be for all those pesky conservatives travelling to MAGA rallies. See where this is going?

But basic white bitch going through the starbux drive through using her slave made iphone, nope that's totally fine.
 
Top