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October 4, 2022
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Bill Gates: “Bitcoin is not good for the climate.” Climate challenges ahead of cryptocurrencies –

Andrew Sorkin interviewed Bill Gates for The New York Times. The main topic was cryptocurrencies. Microsoft developer claims that “Bitcoin is not good for the environment.” This is, of course, the cost of the energy used. Bitcoin and the climate – an issue that has been gaining great publicity over the last year. BTC consumes as much energy annually as Argentina.

Bitcoin and the climate

Bitcoin uses more electricity per transaction than any other method known to mankind.

This is how Bill Gates commented on Bitcoin’s energy costs. In fact, Bitcoin mining at this point requires an annual energy consumption of Argentina. Of course, there is disagreement over how much of this energy is responsible for the expansion of the world’s carbon footprint. It is estimated that about ⅔ of the energy consumed by BTC is generated using renewable energy. However, even under these conditions, CO2 emissions remain a major challenge. At the same time, as Bitcoin’s popularity grows, its energy requirement is steadily increasing – thereby increasing its carbon footprint.

Annual cost of electricity consumption of countries and Bitcoin

Alexander de Vries, an analyst at the Dutch Central Bank, estimates that each transaction processed by BTC requires 300 kg of CO2 – the equivalent of 750,000 VISA transactions. de Vries is the founder of the project Digiconomist – website dedicated to monitoring energy consumption by Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Responsible for this is … blockchain. The need to document each transaction in a distributed register allows for transparency and security of transactions. Everything is at the expense of energy.

Bill Gates: "Bitcoin is not good for the climate." Climate challenges ahead of cryptocurrencies - 22

Increase in the Hash Rate of the BTC network since its inception

Business and Bitcoin

The huge increase in Bitcoin’s popularity stems from institutional interest. Companies like Microstrategy, Tesla, Square and others buy more BTC than the network itself can produce.

Adding cryptocurrencies to your wallet will make it less green
comments de Vries

Even so, the business world feels pressure and responsibility for its investments. Jack Dorsey, creator of Square, announced the investment on the order of $ 10 million in favor of greener Bitcoin mining technologies.

Bill Gates, however, is not unequivocally opposed to Bitcoin. He points out that he is willing to change his mind if meaningful alternatives are presented:

If it’s green electricity and it doesn’t crowd out other uses, ultimately maybe that’s OK

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