By CCN Markets: Here we go again. Yet another article has surfaced taking potshots at the perceived threat of Bitcoin’s energy consumption.
A recent article out of MIT Technology Review claims that:
Mining Bitcoin is a hugely wasteful process. For miners to accrue more of the cryptocurrency, powerful computing hardware must solve increasingly difficult, and pointless, puzzles.
The article cites an in-depth study conducted by researchers at MIT and the Technical University of Munich. A slightly different approach compared the hardware and efficiency use from the IPO filings of the largest three mining producers: Bitmain, Canaan, and Ebang.
The study concluded that annual Bitcoin energy consumption totals about 45.8 terawatt hours (TWh) with a carbon footprint of around 22.5 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide (MtCO2). To put that in perspective, the researchers claim the output is equivalent to that of Kansas City or a small country like Jordan.
For some reason, Bitcoin skeptics love to throw countries into the mix when making comparisons with the mac daddy of crypto. Most likely to exaggerate their rather bold claims.
Can You Even Make an Apples to Apples Comparison?
The problem with naysayers is they fail to take into account the electricity usage of the current banking system. Electricity hogs include the likes of:
- Bank offices that are lit 24/7
- Data centers that manage clearing and fraud detection non-stop
- Bank branches
- Card readers
- Trading floors
- The list goes on
As Bitcoin expert Andreas Antonopolous points out, the parts that make the current industry tick are extensive and difficult to track.
That didn’t stop one blockchain analyst from trying though. Carlos Domingo of SPiCE VC conservatively estimates that banking infrastructure worldwide uses around 100 TWh of electricity every year.
Even with the latest MIT study that still places Bitcoin at more than twice the efficiency of our…