Bitcoin Is Bad For The Environment… Or Is It?

  • Bitcoin Is Bad For The Environment… Or Is It?

    The massive energy costs that miners are burdened with for Bitcoin have been worrying many in the crypto community, especially in light of the fact that several people outside of the community have aimed a lot of negativity towards to the industry. The main headline that a lot of people use, is something like ‘bitcoin mining is killing the planet’.

    Measuring Bitcoin

    According to a report from the digital asset management firm Arca, there are many misconceptions of bitcoin out there. Titled “Bitcoin Study: Energy Consumption as a Corollary to Environmental Impact and the Potential of the Evolution of Money,” the report looks into such stories of Bitcoin ‘killing the planet’ and ‘harming the environment’.

    The author of the report, Sasha Fleyshman has said:
    “Is there a problem with Bitcoin because it needs electricity? The same argument could be made for refrigeration, which is completely reliant on electricity to keep products cool. Does that mean that refrigeration has a systemic problem?”

    The author further went onto talk about the idea of the leading cryptocurrency being the first modern-day darknet market. This argument comes from the general consensus of Bitcoin not being governed by a regulatory body and is therefore impossible to keep track of.

    “As for using BTC for nefarious activities, a report conducted in 2018 revealed that 46% of all Bitcoin transactions ($76 B) were used for illegal activities, which fell in line with the percentages in the U.S. and European black markets. When you take into account the vast imbalance between the total Bitcoin market capitalization to that of the U.S. dollar, it becomes evident that Bitcoin is dwarfed by traditional currencies in funding illegal activities ($100 B, 2010).”

    It will be interesting to see how this plays out. The environmental impact of Bitcoin is real nevertheless but its how we limit mining that determines how we go forward.

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