If the Bitcoin bulls (CRYPTO: BTC) were right and the price of the coin reached a value of $ 500,000, it could have dire consequences for the environment.
According to a Fortune report on Tuesday, Bitcoin’s “infamous carbon footprint” could grow inexorably if its price goes up as many proponents expect. Bitcoin miners now supposedly generate as much CO2 as “the nation of Greece emits many times more, which corresponds to the emissions of much larger industrial nations.”
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Admittedly, numerous efforts are being made to make Bitcoin greener – which was arguably fueled by Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) discontinuing its support for the coin over concerns about its environmental impact. Still, the report said, “unless Bitcoin goes green on a large scale, its built-in economics guarantee that as its price rises, so will the amount of carbon dioxide it emits.”
Bitcoin price until Christmas 202
If the price of Bitcoin climbs to $ 100,000 by Christmas 2024 – the year Bitcoin production is halved to reduce inflation – the mining industry would grow by about 8% and generate about 8% more CO2 than it does today.
If bitcoin reached $ 500,000 by 2024, or even a few years later, the industry would grow from $ 16 billion today to $ 86 billion.
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Such growth would result in miners spending a total of $ 52 billion on electricity in three or more years, at an estimated average cost of $ 40 per megawatt hour.
As a result, the Bitcoin mining industry would consume 1.3 billion MW of electricity per year – and the network is currently emitting an estimated 475 grams of CO2 for every megawatt of electricity used. If so, Bitcoin would emit 617 million tons of carbon per year at a price of $ 500,000.
Such a carbon footprint would be more than enormous. It would be 56% larger than that of Australia, 40% that of Brazil, 40% of South Africa and 33% of Mexico. The Bitcoin network would emit 70% more carbon than the United States and approach German emissions of 696 million tons. Finally, Bitcoin would be a staggering 12% of the United States’ carbon footprint.
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