Researchers explain how Bitcoin mining causes pollution

What you need to know:

  • Researchers say the process of generating Bitcoin - through solving complex mathematical puzzles or ‘mining’ - uses vast quantities of electricity, which in turn leads to large carbon dioxide emissions.
  • According to the study, “the Carbon Footprint of Bitcoin”, published in the online journal Joule on June 12, the researchers strove to find out the environmental impact of the popular cryptocurrency.
  • The methodology used  for estimating the power consumption associated with Bitcoin’s blockchain was based on initial public offerings (IPO) filings of major hardware manufacturers, insights on mining facility operations and mining pool compositions.
  • The researchers calculated the approximate power consumption to 45.8 terawatts, 2,120 times more than the electricity consumption of the whole of Kenya.

A new study has found that the process of creating cryptocurrency, which makes digital transactions so much easier, is a great polluter of the planet.


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