Why is Bitcoin Mining So Bad for the Environment

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Preserving nature and saving the planet has for many years been the main issue and topic. Even though there are some improvements in this field over the years, as soon as something else that gets global attention emerges, we immediately forget about climate change.

Either that or we let the fact that at the paste we are currently destroying the planet means that our grandchildren will most certainly not have the same childhood on Earth as we had, willingly go to the back of our mind. Yes, some exaggerate in these estimations, but even that is because activists only want to raise our awareness. After all, we can all do much more, and recycling would be a great start.

Global warming is not just about hot summers

The answer to why we so often hear about global warming is simple, and it is because we use so many things we simply don’t need, and fuel and energy consumption overall have only been increasing in the past couple of decades. But, let’s first debunk a common myth about global warming because no, that doesn’t mean the temperatures are only going up, and what global warming is all about is sudden, rapid, and extreme changes in temperature.

That is why we are more and more often witnessing some record high or low temperatures, not typical for that particular part of the year. There are currently more than 7.5 billion people on this planet, and just a decade ago, in 2010, that number was below 7 billion, but what many studies and researches done on this topic show is that we still use three times more energy than we actually need, and that’s without 13% of the world who do not have access to electricity. It’s just too much, which answers the question of why so many experts argue that in order to lessen our carbon footprint, we all must start to act much more responsibly.

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How Bitcoin mining adds up to this?

With this said, it’s no wonder that people criticize crypto mining as something that enhances pollution, and here, we only think about crypto farms and not individual miners. Yes, it may have taken some time, but mining is yet again popular, and yes, it’s an entirely different kind of work with the same name. But just how much of that electricity is actually harming our planet compared to other things we do?

Is it all just another attack on cryptocurrencies from crypto skeptics, banks, and governments because they now don’t have as much influence and command over our finances? Well, that’s one possibility, but the truth is probably somewhere in the middle, and in order to answer the question of why BTC mining is so bad for the environment, we need to start from the beginning.

How much energy does mining consumes?

The overall BTC mining energy consumption is around 0.5% of global electricity, which may sound like a lot if we only take this fact into the equation, but what many often overlook is that energy consumption is not the same as carbon emissions. Now, the amount of carbon emissions entirely depends on how energy that mining consumes is produced, and whether that’s hydro energy, coal, or a nuclear one. With this said, there is no way to actually determine how much pollution mining itself is responsible for because, in the end, it’s more up to the way we still produce energy than for what we end up using it.

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It all depends on the way of mining

As soon as we turn the lights on, we are contributing to pollution of the environment. This is just a fact, and yes, how much we contribute to it depends on the energy consumption, and no, turning the lights on will not use as much energy as mining BTC will, but it also depends on how we mine it.

There are different ways to mine, and you probably searched and browse through websites like coinpedia.org to learn more about mining Bitcoin via your phone, especially Android users, and we cannot say that doing so is as dangerous for the environment as mining farms. The other way to mine it is via computers, and buying expensive rigs is something we all at least heard about because without those rigs, all that would not be possible.

Mining consumes more energy than completing transactions

Here is where many people get confused, but the answer is pretty simple. The amount of energy used for mining is much greater than the one used for validating transactions. It is simple as that, and facts prove this.

Is there any way to mine responsibly?

The entire purpose of BTC miners is to find new Bitcoin blocks for which highly advanced system and tech is needed, and that tech uses a lot of energy. As a reward for their job, miners get compensation in a certain amount of BTC, or to be more precise, Satoshi (the smallest unit of a bitcoin, equivalent to 100 millionth of a bitcoin).

Saying that there is a solution for the energy consumption problem would not be honest, to say the least, but we could all do more in developing new ways to make that energy more environmentally friendly. Those who have solar panels are already familiar with this, but, once again, those are just individuals, and as long as BTC mining farms are not using this type of energy, we cannot expect any change regarding this question.

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The bottom line

As you saw, there is no simple answer to why Bitcoin mining is bad for the environment, but what you can be sure about is that as long as we use fossil fuels, any energy consumption will only add to the pollution of the environment. Of course, using solar or wind power will be great, but for now, installing these systems is costly, and a person will spend much more on installing it than they would make money mining Bitcoin, and if there is no profit, we would simply not do that.