Mining Bitcoin Clean Energy – Bitcoin Magazine: Bitcoin News, Articles, Charts, and Guides

What if you could substitute a renewable battery-powered motor for the internal combustion engine just twelve years after its invention? At minimum, we would not be faced with the challenge of limiting greenhouse gas emissions. For all of the benefits the internal combustion engine has brought humanity, its environmental consequences are not among them.

An equally consequential technology — Bitcoin (BTC) — in its twelfth year of existence, is being adopted at an unprecedented pace.1 The position of current Bitcoin thought leaders is that Bitcoin’s energy use “is not a problem.”2 However, despite its rapid adoption, Bitcoin still operates at the periphery for most people. As it matures, its energy use, among other things, will only receive greater scrutiny. Operating the Bitcoin network globally uses as much energy as Washington state, which amounts to less than one half of one percent of total global energy use. However, Bitcoin’s energy use can be framed in ways that could undermine its promise, as has been done many times before.3 Because of the positive impact it is positioned to provide society, bitcoin mining should involve clean energy and waste energy streams so that its progress is not unnecessarily halted. It is all the more essential because with effort, bitcoin mining can be done with clean energy sources and by relying on waste energy streams. But to facilitate a movement toward more climate-friendly bitcoin mining, more people must appreciate why bitcoin is consequential.