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How Bitcoin mining has become good for our planet

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The most important innovations in human history positively affect the world in ways their inventors could not have predicted.of helped the printing press break down The monopoly of the Catholic Church in thought. YouTube was originally intended to be a video-based dating sitebut now it’s over 120 million people worldwide Watch YouTube videos daily to learn about all the subjects people know.When Satoshi Nakamoto’s 2008 Bitcoin White Paperwas originally written to explain how decentralized, corruption-free money works, but has revolutionized the ongoing human-energy relationship before our very eyes. .

Nakomoto’s Beginnings

The intentions of Nakamoto, the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin, came to light through correspondence on the Cypherpunk mailing list. As he wrote in 2011: “The fundamental problem with conventional currency is all the trust it takes to make it work. The central bank must be trusted not to devalue the currency, but the history of fiat It’s fraught with betrayal of that trust.Banks must be trusted to hold and transfer our money electronically, but amid a wave of credit bubbles, a fraction of their reserves I will lend it to you.”

Nakamoto has successfully created a trustless digital currency to replace fiat currencies. Since the Bitcoin white paper was published 14 years ago today, Bitcoin is already bought and held by about 25 million people People, and the underlying technology, continue to make Bitcoin even more user-friendly. As of October 2022, the price of 1 Bitcoin is over US$19,000. Only US$0.09 in 2010!

However, Bitcoiners quickly realized that the Bitcoin network could do more than provide a healthy global reserve asset.Bitcoin mining Nakamoto’s dream component turned out to be the solution to many energy-related problems facing humanity.

This never-ending increase in the bitcoin network’s energy demands has caused concern among environmentalists.But perhaps contrary to common sense, Bitcoin mining is key to a healthier relationship with both energy When environment.

Bitcoin mining keeps clean energy

In April 2021, Jack Dorsey’s Square announced, “Bitcoin is the key to an abundant and clean energy future

Matching the supply of solar and wind energy to demand is notoriously difficult. The wind isn’t always blowing and the sun isn’t always shining, but society’s energy needs aren’t always zero. To make renewable energy such as solar and wind profitable, Something Excess energy for these energy sources must be paid for when demand from society is low – and voluntarily No Consume energy when demand is high.

Bitcoin miners can work from anywhere on earth as long as they have a power source and an internet connection. Additionally, Bitcoin miners are perfectly capable and willing to shut down their machines temporarily if it is economically viable. Bitcoin mining is different from other activities that require constant activity to sustain profits (for example, supply his chain or restaurant activities).

The ability of Bitcoin mining to “subsidize” unprofitable renewable energy sources is more than just a theory. In 2021, Argo Blockchain PLC and DMG Blockchain Solutions will launch the first-ever Green Bitcoin Mining Pool, and others are launching with the same mission.

Bitcoin mining cleans up the waste

Bitcoin miners can also tap into isolated energy sources that cause air pollution, such as waste methane.

For over 100 years, Methane is 30 times more warming than carbon dioxideBitcoin mining is Only available technology We can reduce mankind’s methane emissions in a scalable and reliable manner.

Climate technology investor Daniel Batten has calculated the environmental impact of Bitcoin mining given its ability to reduce methane emissions. He calculated that Bitcoin could become net carbon negative by 2025. 23% reduction in methane emissions, helping to eliminate 0.15 °C of climate change by 2045. By using methane that would otherwise be released into the atmosphere, bitcoin mining ultimately has a carbon negative effect and helps avoid climate disaster.

Bitcoin mining’s ability to swallow human waste and spew out digital gold is far from a pipe dream, as there are already projects actively pursuing this model.

not everyone agrees

Despite the examples presented here, many people are still concerned about Bitcoin’s continued increase in energy consumption. NBC recently said, “Bitcoin’s greenhouse gas emissions are expected to reach 48.4 million tons of CO2 equivalent this year”, viewed by many politicians as net-negative.Additionally, Cambridge’s Bitcoin Electricity Consumption Index recently found that Bitcoin’s renewable energy mix is ​​actually under Since 2021, many are questioning how much Bitcoin can revolutionize our relationship with energy.

Regarding Bitcoin’s huge energy consumption: Yes, it is true that Bitcoin consumes a lot of energy.but almost so all – actually, Christmas lights consume more energy than the Bitcoin networkThe truth is that the most portable money ever invented, usable by anyone on the planet, is worth the energy cost. There is.Moreover, Bitcoin you save It requires more energy than the current fiat currency system. The latter is the driving force behind boom-bust cycles, resulting in entrepreneurs wastefully investing resources (including energy) in companies and projects doomed to failure.

Regarding Bitcoin’s short-term decline in renewable energy consumption: Bitcoin network yet It is one of the greenest sectors in the global economy. Moreover, there will undoubtedly be short-term fluctuations in Bitcoin’s renewable energy mix over time. Much more importantly, it is the underlying reason why Bitcoin can subsidize green energy and curb waste emissions in a scalable manner. This is sound in theory and proven in daily practice.

BETTER MONEY FOR A BETTER EARTH

Bitcoin mining’s potential to revolutionize the relationship between energy and the environment is the most exciting story currently unfolding in the Bitcoin world.even White House recent report “The EPA and the Department of the Interior have proposed new rules to reduce methane in oil and gas operations, but cryptocurrency mining operations that capture emitted methane to generate electricity will have positive climate consequences. May be strong methane [carbon dioxide] Combustion…but mining operations may be more reliable and efficient at converting methane to CO2

Messari’s Recent Bitcoin Report for Q3 2022 It included a staggering bar chart showing the sustainable energy mix of Bitcoin mining (see Figure 1). This figure will rise from 37% in Q1 2021 to an almost incredible 60% in Q2 2022, Bitcoin mining is one of the most sustainable industries in the world.

The evolution of Bitcoin’s sustainable energy mix as determined by the Bitcoin Mining Council. Infographic by Messari.

The ideas in Satoshi Nakamoto’s white paper should be enough to place Bitcoin in the pantheon of the greatest innovations in human history. After all, there was no global, unauthorized currency asset that could not be inflated. But in addition to the revolution in the relationship between humans and money, Nakamoto’s innovation brought about a second revolution not mentioned in the original paper. Bitcoin mining provides subsidies for renewable energy projects, keeps isolated energy sources online away from civilization, and turns toxic and climate-change-inducing waste into digital gold.

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