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Bitcoin vs Gold mining shocking environmental impact

Tired of this accusation, I decided to research it myself based on facts instead of tweets and articles published by suspicious financial media owned by Billionaires who are financially incentivized to protect their assets.

Bitcoin Hash rate is 160m Terahash/s

1 Antminer 9 produces ~13.5 TH/s and consumes 1.5 KWh (less than this, but let’s be pessimistic)

So for the Top hashrate 160 TH/s (it’s less today, but let’s keep pessimistic) we would need around 12 million Antminers.

12M antminers * 1.5 KWh = 18 GigaWatts hour

So we can pessimistically assume Bitcoin network consumes 18 GWh.

Now Gold, uses [~132 Terawatts per year, so around 15 Gigawatts hour.](https://www.coindesk.com/microscope-true-costs-gold-production)

However, most of the power source for Gold mining is fossil fuels, including coal, because of the several procedures required for processing Gold can’t even use renewables. Also, Bitcoin is mostly renewables because it’s economically viable to do it this way. In places like Iceland where cooling is easier for Bitcoin mines, most of the power is geothermal.

On top of this, the amount of toxic chemicals used by Gold mining industry and released into the environment make this argument absolutely ridiculous.

**TL;DR Gold shits on the environment on a scale that Bitcoin doesn’t even come close to touch.**



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9 Comments

  1. Quick maths.

    Jokes aside, it’s sadly true that generally some individuals are very critical of Bitcoin and will find any excise to bash the idea of utilizing the currency for anything productive. I think that when the time comes where there are very few bitcoins left to be obtained by mining, that’s when people will probably change their tune about this.

  2. Never heard anyone complaining about gold mining not being friendly with the environment.. also like you said there are huge energy consumptions (that are also quite toxic) for processing the metal, and we are also not considering transportation and security costs and consumptions.

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