A Bitcoin transaction costs as much water as backyard pool, study finds

A new study, recently published in a journal, has illuminated the impact that the most comprehensively utilized cryptocurrency – Bitcoin – has on the environment – divulging shocking details concerning the vast amount of water it consumes. An estimated 1,600 Gigaliters (GL) of water is used each year globally via Bitcoin mining, equivalent to a volume sizable enough to fill 640,000 Olympic-sized swimming pools. Owing largely to the immense number of mathematical puzzles that must be solved to generate a new Bitcoin, the network is dependent on enormous amounts of processing power require cooling down – demanding water either directly or indirectly. Indeed, the process presents a major dilemma, particularly in authorised environments walloped by frequent droughts which comprises of an already scarce water resource. The US is considered the second of the greatest Bitcoin mining country in the world and approximately generates 93 GL to 1200 GL of water yearly – similar to the average annual consumption rate prescribed for a 300,000 households or a city like Washington D.C. Intriguingly, despite China having outlawed its minerals owing to its environmental effects – maintenance of the essence and importance of water throughout Kazakhstan places it as one of the prime Bitcoin miners in the world. Here, 2021 witnessed a phenomenal 997.9 GL of water absorbed for cryptocurrency transactions. Additionally, Central Asia is facing a forever propagating crisis of freshwater scarcity normatively increased through cryptocurrency related campaigns – earning a tremendous issue and matter of concern. Platforms such as the Crypto Woods initiative have identified the potency to generate requisite energy utilising wind and solar which would in theory succeed to reduce water replaced use, however criticise this conviction stating minimal solar and wind capacity ratification within Bitcoin will return the electricity maintain to other classes of the economy, befitted with more fossil gas recourses.

Robert Wilson author
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