Bitcoin prices have been rising for the past couple of months. This has resulted in celebration for users who had invested heavily in the cryptocurrency. But it appears that the value of Bitcoin is not the only thing that has hit the roof in 2017. Bitcoin mining energy has also reached new heights this year. A research study conducted by PowerCompare, a U.K.-based company for energy comparison tariff found that the average power used to mine Bitcoins this year has already gone beyond the annual energy consumption for some 159 countries. In simple words, if Bitcoin miners were a country they’d rank 61st in the world in terms of electricity consumption.
Mining Bitcoins is like finding solutions to complicated math problems that become progressively more difficult. Coins are awarded to computers that verify transactions with an algorithm that gets more complex over time. Nowadays mining has become increasingly reliant on specialized equipment, and mining operations now use tens of thousands of these power-hungry devices in expansive warehouses to extract more coins. Estimates of how much electricity goes into making cryptocurrencies vary widely – from the output of one large nuclear reactor to the consumption of the entire population of Denmark. But analysts agree that the industry’s power use is expanding rapidly – especially after a price surge that made bitcoin almost four times more valuable than just three months ago.
Here are some interesting facts on Bitcoin mining and Electricity Consumption:
- Bitcoin mining is done online and is not printed on paper, also it is not secured by a government, country, company or one individual.
- In the past month alone, Bitcoin mining electricity consumption is estimated to have increased by 29.98%
- If it keeps increasing at this rate, Bitcoin mining will consume all the world’s electricity by February 2020.
- Chinese mining pools control more than 70% of the Bitcoin network’s collective hash rate (the speed at which a computer is completing an operation in the Bitcoin code)
Bitcoin is just a small part of a global surge in energy demand from computers as our lives become more digital. But with its soaring value, there’s a huge incentive to invest more in hardware that extracts the digital currency.