The Climate Cost of Cryptocurrency

Bitcoin’s annual power consumptions is comparable to that of Finland. Hold on. Remind. One more time. Bitcoin’s annual power consumptions is comparable to that of Finland. Let’s jump in. 

First off, if you are as confused as to what a crypto/Bitcoin even is, we highly recommend you give this podcast a listen:

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies work on the concept of blockchain. Basically, a large storage device for all the transactions. And it's super computationally intensive and therefore very energy intensive. TL;DR you're not mining for bitcoin in your basement on a BestBuy Deal of the Day desktop.

That said, because the price of cryptos have gone up, demand has gone up, making mining more difficult (back to the blockchain computations) and therefore increases the carbon footprint.

But what's cool is that organizations are starting to realize that the story needs to change. NFT developers are calling for change as they see organizations wanting to change the way that cryptocurrencies function to a less computationally heavy system. Again, less computation, less electricity, lower carbon footprint.

However, some are pushing back on this argument saying that the question here is, "What is a good use of energy?" And since cryptos, unlike some other energy consumers, are very transparent about their consumption, maybe we shouldn't be so quick to criticize.

Which is a valid point. But if you're the new kind on the block(chain), maybe you could-- I dunno-- set the example? 

In the meantime you can follow Bitcoin's energy consumption, here. You can find out more about NFTs, here, or by listening to Kara Swisher interview Beeple on the Sway Podcast.