This is a controversial issue in the blockchain community that comes up from time to time – how much does bitcoin (BTC) mining impact the environment. Last year, Tesla CEO Elon Musk made a sharp correction in the cryptocurrency market by tweeting that Tesla would drop plans to accept BTC, citing “growing use of fossil fuels in bitcoin mining and transactions.” However, a recent report published by CoinShares notes that despite the widespread use of coal, oil and gas for bitcoin mining, the network accounts for less than 0.08% of global carbon dioxide production.
During an exclusive interview with Cointelegraph, Christian Sebexar, marketing manager for Slush Pool, the oldest bitcoin mining pool, opened up about what he believes is currently a misconception about the environmental impact of bitcoin mining. Asked about the downsides of using oil and gas-derived electricity to mine bitcoin, Sepxar said there are more than you can see:
“We are literally burning gas in the atmosphere just because it is not economically viable to do anything with it. Instead, we can put it in an engine to generate electricity and use it to mine Bitcoin.”
Flaring is the process of burning excess natural gas from oil production due to the lack of pipeline infrastructure to bring it to market. Recently, in the US and Canada, bitcoin miners have found smart ways to convert natural gas into electricity instead of just burning it in the atmosphere, thus solving a serious environmental problem.
But Csepcar remains skeptical of any of the renewable sources of bitcoin mining, calling it “marketing noise,” especially solar energy. As he told Cointelegraph:
“In our blog, we published a study that we are not a big driver of solar energy production; when you consider profitability, it’s not good; it is a very difficult business. ”
Cespcsar also states that almost 70% of all solar panels are manufactured in China and that there hasn’t been much research into the environmental impact of the manufacturing process:
It produces many harmful chemicals. And nobody talks about it. Everyone thinks that solar panels grow on trees, and then the sun shines on them. But no, the manufacturing process is cruel.
Finally, Slush Pool does not have calculations regarding the energy source used by bitcoin miners. When asked why this is so, Siseksar gave an answer that was unexpected, but perhaps correct for his philosophy of decentralization and privacy:
“We don’t want to see him as a pool operator. To get these numbers, we need our miners to pass KYC, audit their operations, or even filter transactions [for analysis]. This is not the spirit you need. Keep. . “