Bitcoin Mining Processes Account for 0.08% of Global CO2 Emissions: Coinshares Report


Environmental conservatives continue to bash Bitcoin, as they believe it poses a significant environmental threat. Environmentalists have criticized the network’s proof-of-work consensus mechanism considering the amount of energy it requires to execute its mandate.

However, Bitcoin supporters have called out environmentalists for never criticizing the energy consumption of the US dollar and how it is backed by state violence. BTC supporters also noted that critics leveraged biased and inaccurate data from the Digiconomist website.

Despite the smear campaign, several reports have revealed that Bitcoin’s energy consumption levels come nothing close to that of alternative financial systems. In May last year, a study published by Galaxy Digital showed that BTC mining processes consumed less energy than what the banking industry or gold consumes. The investment management firm also revealed that companies like Great American Mining, Upstream Data, and Crusoe Energy Systems utilized methane emissions by converting flared gas into reusable energy. The study detailed:

Bitcoin mining is the ideal energy sink: anyone, anywhere, can monetize excess energy by plugging in [the] equipment and switching it off at their convenience. One example of where Bitcoin mining acts as an energy sink is in oil fields, resulting in a direct reduction in methane emissions.”

Coinshares Report on Bitcoin CO2 Emissions

Meanwhile, Coinshares released its Bitcoin mining report this week, which detailed the latest data on Bitcoin mining operations alongside environmental, social, and governance (ESG) concerns. According to the report, Bitcoin protocols expended 42 megatons (Mt) of CO2 in 2021.

The study also revealed that the total global emission in 2019 was 49,360 Mt of CO2, meaning that Bitcoin’s mining infrastructure accounted for only 0.08% of global carbon dioxide emission. The Coinshares report detailed:

“As a point of reference, total global energy consumption (not production, which is considerably higher) in 2019 has been estimated at 162,194 TWh. At an annual energy draw of 89 TWh, the Bitcoin mining network uses approximately 0.05% of the total energy consumed globally. This strikes us as a small cost for a global monetary system, and on the global energy balance sheet, it amounts to a rounding error.”


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Azeez Mustapha

Azeez Mustapha is a trading professional, currency analyst, signals strategist, and funds manager with over ten years of experience within the financial field. As a blogger and finance author, he helps investors understand complex financial concepts, improve their investing skills, and learn how to manage their money.