The first thing I have to say is that I am a tech freak and therefore a Tesla fanboy. I think you can’t be one without the other. Tesla is by far the most innovative company in the world and also the champion of the fight against the climate crisis.
And precisely for that reason, I couldn’t believe when it was announced that Tesla had invested 1.5 billion dollars in Bitcoin and that it was also beginning to accept Bitcoin as a form of payment in its store. And no, it is not because I believe that cryptocurrencies are a fad, quite the opposite.
The problem is that we are talking about Bitcoin, the most polluting cryptocurrency in the world. Bitcoin mining consumes more energy than Norway, and for what? Mining a Bitcoin is solving a cryptographic puzzle so complex that it takes huge server farms to solve it. Yes, as silly as it sounds. Bitcoin consumes more energy than Norway to solve a game.
A game yes, but so profitable that there are even coal plants that come back to life just to feed one of these farms. For reference, if you could buy a coffee with Bitcoin (something that will never happen), that transaction consumes no less than 910 kWh; enough energy to supply my house for more than 4 months !!!!
And this is why when reading the news that the champion of the climate crisis legitimized this nonsense (with the repercussion that everything Tesla does has), the great Dylan Moran came to mind to give this post a title.
A couple of days ago, and after reports that the energy to mine Bitcoin was increasing and dirtier, Elon Musk announced that they were suspending the use of Bitcoin in their store until the energy used in mining is not more clean.
Elon, this doesn’t fix anything. Wasting — yes, wasting — Terawatts of renewable energy mining cryptocurrencies does not help at all. This huge amount of clean energy has to be used to replace other polluting sources, rather than flushing it down the Bitcoin mining toilet.
Am I calling for an end to cryptocurrencies? No. What I am asking is to stop using outdated technologies (and Bitcoin is indeed obsolete) with absurd energy requirements and switch to using new generation cryptos. Cryptos that are not mined.
Say NO to mining
As Musk himself says, “The best part, is no part.” It is not a question of making mining more efficient, it is doing without it completely.
And the alternative is not Proof of Stake (which has no mining). For me this is an aberration: that, in a decentralized system, the one with the most tokens is the one who can make decisions, it is an absolute nonsense.
Blockchain is obsolete
IMHO, Blockchain is an obsolete technology and this includes all the cryptocurrencies that are based on it (Bitcoin, Ethereum and a very long etc.). The cryptocurrency universe must migrate to a more advanced technological base that is already available.
I am talking about IOTA, the only crypto (that I am aware of) that is not based on Blockchain and the only one with which you can buy a coffee without destroying the planet.
As a comparison, validating a transaction in IOTA has an energy consumption of 0.000001 kWh, that is, 834 million times more efficient than Bitcoin. It also happens to be feeless.
Is IOTA the crypto Musk is referring to in his tweet? It should be.