Why does Bitcoin pollute so much?

   2022-08-05 11:08

Cryptocurrencies are famously bad for the environment… but is there a way we can do better?

A study titled “Revisiting Bitcoin’s Carbon Footprint” showed how Bitcoin could be responsible for 65.4 megatons of carbon emissions annually, which is about the same amount as the entire country of Greece.



China’s crackdown on Bitcoin mining hasn’t entirely made the dent in these numbers it was expected to, mainly since it was later found that mining in China never stopped. Simply put, no amount of restriction will make a difference. Bitcoin was created to resist regulation and censorship, so even if a country banned mining, it wouldn’t stop individuals from building mining rigs in their homes.

High energy consumption

The high energy consumption of the mining process is not a flaw; it’s a feature. Bitcoin mining is the process of validating token transactions without the intervention of third parties. This validation process uses large amounts of energy, using the computational power of thousands of mining machines.

This entire process used to be possible with home computers, but mining hardware has evolved since the early 2000s, giving rise to Application-Specific Integrated Circuits, chips solely made for mining Bitcoin. These machines constantly run, causing vast amounts of consumption close to the energy used by countries like the Netherlands or Chile.

Miners buy the electricity they use, most often generated from fossil fuels. Burning those fuels emit greenhouse gases which warm the Earth’s climate and cause pollution that harms human health.

The issue doesn’t end there. Competition among miners drives up energy use, and as Bitcoin’s value climbs higher, that competition gets fiercer.

As of May 2021, computers in the Bitcoin-mining network made 180 quintillion guesses per second, and each BTC token sold for $36,000 that month before climbing to $57,000 in December 2021. With incentives like these, it’s no wonder that miners are constantly working on mining more cryptocurrency.

Energy usage – by the numbers

According to the University of Cambridge Electricity Consumption Index, by June 2022, the global Bitcoin network needed 14.34 gigawatts of electricity generation, which is enough to power nearly 14.4 million American households. That is roughly 126 Terawatt-hours (TWh). If we take an average of 10.6 cents per kWh, it amounts to approximately $13.4 billion. In addition, energy consumption for mining hit an all-time high at the end of 2021, hitting over 200 terawatt-hours.

All this isn’t even accounting for the environmental damage caused by these activities. At this point, we need to plant 284 million trees to offset the effects of Bitcoin mining!

A Negative Impression

Blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies offer new opportunities for all industries, from finance and banking to media, healthcare, entertainment, and e-commerce. Unfortunately, however, these troubling statistics take the focus away from its benefits and shine a spotlight on how harmful they are to the environment, and rightfully so.

As a result, much of the public is hesitant to adopt Web 3.0 and its components.

With the bad press cryptocurrencies receive, good projects that make a genuine effort to mine sustainably get drowned in the noise before they have a chance. Several innovative projects like Cardano (created by Ethereum co-founder), whose Proof-of-Stake model eliminates mining, and Ripple, which will be carbon-neutral by 2030, are coming up in response to the effects of Bitcoin mining.

Among these projects is Megatech (MGT), a South-African-based firm that ensures sustainability through blockchain technology.

A new outlook

Megatech is the world’s answer to the energy problem, implementing the ultimate green sustainable energy technology.

There is a high demand for green electricity supply worldwide, especially in Africa. MGT combines state-of-the-art solar energy technology, revolutionary storage technology, and a dynamic funding model to ensure high profits and low turnaround times.

All token holders benefit from financial returns on solar plants owned by Megatech. The first plant, Project Beta, is a 60MW solar farm that will include a 100MWh of technology with the opportunity for users to sell green renewable energy at peak rates to blue-chip listed entities that have already signed on with Megatech.

In addition, 40% of all financial gains from this project and all future projects in the pipeline will vest in the MGT Solar (PTY) LTD. company that is managed independently by fiduciary directors on behalf of token holders who participate in the performance staking program.

Megatech is also in partnership with various companies in the renewable energy sector and has contracted one of the leading EPC technical teams in Africa to carry out their vision. Their initiative is 100% compliant with ESKOM (National Energy Commission).

A better tomorrow

Climate change is no longer a problem of the future; it’s here. Still, it isn’t too late to address these concerns and move towards sustainable energy while maintaining our way of life and bringing the limitless opportunities and benefits of blockchain technology and mining to individuals and corporations worldwide.

Megatech’s vision to become the number one blockchain technology company only comes second to its passion for sustainability and improvement. If in the process of solving one of the biggest problems that plague our planet, they can empower users to earn crypto, that’s just icing on the cake.

Source: https://www.newsbtc.com/news/company/why-does-bitcoin-pollute-so-much/


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