The Amount Of Electricity Bitcoin Mining Is Still Consuming May Shock You

the amount of electricity bitcoin mining is still consuming may shock you
Cryptocurrency has had a bit of a resurgence over the last few weeks, with Bitcoin peaking at $45,000 before settling back to around $42,000. However, Bitcoin is still a proof-of-work cryptocurrency, meaning equations must be solved to receive rewards, which involves using graphics cards or other specialized hardware to "mine" for it. All of that hardware obviously requires power, which researchers have found accounts for up to a whopping 2.3% of the United States’ power demand.

Earlier this month, researchers from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) published a report which tracked electricity consumption for U.S. cryptocurrency operations. With this research, estimates suggest that “annual electricity use from cryptocurrency mining probably represents from 0.6% to 2.3% of U.S. electricity consumption.” This estimate has caught the attention of Congress, who have penned letters outlining a desire to “secure information that could better identify the effects of cryptocurrency mining on electricity and energy-related CO2 emissions.”

map the amount of electricity bitcoin mining is still consuming may shock you

Another interesting data point discovered is that there are 52 major cryptocurrency mining operations in the United States, many of which are based out of Texas, Georgia, and New York. With respect to the Texas mining operations, it is noted that two large cryptocurrency operations estimate that they could require up to 500 MW of electric capacity each at peak load. This is just a small portion of the estimated 10,275 MW required for 101 of 137 facilities identified in the research, though.

Aside from the sheer load and strain required for to power cryptocurrency operations, there are also emissions and pollution implications. With all that in mind, the researchers call for continued investigation, “which is required to better inform planning decisions and educate the public.”