US cryptocurrency exchange Gemini has purchased carbon credits to help decarbonize Bitcoin amid a growing clamor that cryptocurrency is not ecologically sound.
Through its newly formed Gemini Green, a long-term initiative to incorporate climate-aware practices into its businesses, the trading platform has partnered with Climate Vault, a non-profit organization associated with the University of Chicago.
The exchange purchased carbon allowances for nearly 350,000 metric tons of carbon to help offset carbon emissions from the Bitcoin Network. The carbon credits will help offset non-renewable energy consumed by miners on the Bitcoin Network to secure the bitcoin that Gemini is guarding.
“As bitcoin emerges as a dominant store of value, it is imperative that we embed sustainability for future generations. We are proud to partner with Climate Vault to offset our exposure to non-renewable mining and contribute to bitcoin decarbonization,” said Tyler Winklevoss, CEO of Gemini.
Concerns over Bitcoin’s energy use have sparked a major polarizing debate in recent weeks, culminating in regulatory crackdown in China. The Asian giant has issued a powerful warning, forcing miners to halt their operations in the country, resulting in a massive exodus of all levels of miners seeking a safe haven elsewhere. While established miners are moving to Kazakhstan or the US, a growing number of retail miners are putting their mining machines up for sale.
According to the Gemini announcement, the exchange has allocated $1 million through the Gemini Opportunities Fund to support businesses, projects and non-profit organizations that are focused on the sustainability of the crypto market. Through a series of approaches coordinated by Climate Vault, the funds will be used to finance companies that develop new technologies that can help remove CO2 from the atmosphere.
The attempt to eliminate the energy use and emissions associated with Bitcoin leads to a charge for adopting sustainable energy in mining operations across the board.