The Bitcoin network mining consensus has long been a topic of environmental, social, and governmental debate, and the new study can only add to the growing debate over Bitcoin’s carbon footprint.
A new research report titled “Rethinking Bitcoin’s Carbon Footprint,” published in the peer-reviewed academic journal, highlights that China’s ban on crypto mining may not have helped reduce the carbon footprint of the Bitcoin network, as many claim. bitcoin makers; On the contrary, it has increased by 17%.
China was the main hub for bitcoin miners until May 2021 and accounted for more than 60% of the total bitcoin network hash rate. However, a blanket ban imposed by the government led to the migration of most of the mines out of the country. The share of bitcoin mining in China fell from more than 60% in May to nearly zero in August, with miners moving to the United States, Russia and Kazakhstan.
Cryptocurrency experts have predicted that the exodus of miners from China will not only make bitcoin mining more decentralized and greener, but the new Google report shows otherwise. A new research report highlights that the amount of renewable energy used to extract BTC has fallen from 42% to around 25% since August last year.
Best sources of energy for bitcoin mining. Source: joules
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The study traced the electricity source that drives mining to calculate the carbon emissions of the Bitcoin network and found that the best blockchain emits 65 megatons of carbon dioxide per year. The study concluded that miners in China were more oriented towards renewable energy than most major mining nations today.
Alex de Vries, one of the report’s authors, told Cointelegraph:
“The study as a whole shows just how much dirtier Bitcoin mining has gotten since mining in China last year. Many hydroelectric miners who previously had access here are now being replaced by natural gas (in the US). In addition, coal power in Kazakhstan is It’s also dirtier than Chinese coal power. Overall, this makes proof-of-work mining much more carbon-intensive than it was before.”
The Goal study also contradicts a report by the Bitcoin Mining Council, led by MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor, which claims that the Bitcoin network uses up to 66% of sustainable energy.