By Stefan Ateljevic/BTXchange
We all know how big of a boom Bitcoin created when it was introduced nearly a decade ago. However, in the last few years, it became infamous because of the amount of energy used for mining. The infographic below provided by BTXchange reports that mining networks consume more power than 159 world countries combined.
But What Is Mining Actually?
As you probably know, Bitcoin is earned through a process called mining. Successful miners who registered a new block of data added to the public ledger is currently rewarded with 12.5 bitcoins. You probably hear about mining a lot nowadays, and it doesn’t seem like the Bitcoin hype will stop. However, even though most people are familiar with crypto, mining is still not a fully explored territory.
Defined as a validation of transactions, mining is performed with the use of computers with strong processing power. Miners need to register newly broadcasted transactions, forming the so-called blocks of data.
Each of these blocks contains the cryptographic hash of the previous one. After being validated by the miners’ computers, the blocks are added to the public ledger.
Specialized types of machines have been created which can run complex hashing algorithms needed for mining. Two of the most commonly used machines are FPGAs and ASICs which consume a lot of power.
How Much Energy Do They Use?
The global Bitcoin mining activity is believed to have spent somewhere between 1 and 4 gigawatts of electricity at the end of last year. However, Bitcoin miners have come up with an idea to lower the mining costs.
They use places like Iceland for mining because of the abundance of geothermal energy which makes electricity cheaper, and because of the free Arctic air which is used for cooling the mining devices. There are even stories about entire villages in Russia, particularly Siberia, performing joint Bitcoin mining activities and even using the energy released for warming their homes.
The infographic below has all the numbers that you need to know about the energy consumed for Bitcoin mining. Check it out.
Stefan Ateljevic is Head of Content and Casino Auditor at BTXchange. With an extensive background in content creation and love for online gambling and all things crypto, Stefan aims to improve the current state of the crypto gambling industry by creating casino case studies and other valuable content.