Can it really be true that the Bitcoin system consumes almost $1.000.000 in electricity per day?

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Of course. At the current block reward of 25 BTC per block, on average 3600 BTC are mined per day which are worth over $1 million.

If it were significantly much cheaper than $1M (in terms of energy costs) to mine that $1M worth of coins, more people would do so, thus the difficulty would go up, thus the energy costs would go up.

By definition, the energy costs to mine x amount of bitcoins will never be significantly less than the actual worth of those bitcoins.

By the way, "wasting" (well, not really) only $365M per year is an incredible efficient improvement over the current banking system worldwide. The huge costs, waste of resources, and TONS of other collateral damage that come with the fiat currency infrastructure is astronomical, and saying that it's much, MUCH more than the costs of Bitcoin is even still an...

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The year is 2018. After a rough Greek exit from the eurozone, economic malaise has spread to Italy, Portugal, Spain, and France. Nervous citizens across Europe look for a way to get their money out as currency traders hammer the weakening euro, banks impose withdrawal limits, and their purchasing power plummets.

Enter Bitcoin.

Compared to the euro, the peer-to-peer decentralized electronic currency has now become a relatively stable digital asset. Fiendish buyers trade their euros en masse online for Bitcoin, and soon, depositors worldwide join them. The price of Bitcoin rises, prompting more user adoption by spenders and speculators, and recognition from governments and populations alike.

The above scenario sounds like a nice piece of prepper-bait from conspiracy site infowars.com. But could (or should) Bitcoin actually take over? Some of the more enthusiastic Bitcoin advocates argue that the currency is ready for prime time—in other words, ready to replace...

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The media often pushes the narrative that Bitcoin mining is a waste of electricity:

Virtual Bitcoin Mining Is a Real-World Environmental Disaster - Bloomberg Bitcoins are a waste of energy - literally - ABC AU Bitcoin Could Consume as Much Energy as Denmark by 2020 - Breitbart

On the surface, it’s easy to understand why Bitcoin mining seems like a waste of energy:

Bitcoin, however, has the potential to create an entire new financial system. And Bitcoin cannot work without miners. A deeper look at today’s financial system shows that mining isn’t as big of a waste as it may seem.

Today’s Banking System Also Uses Electricity

It’s easy to say that Bitcoin mining waste electricity without comparing it to today’s banking system. It costs between $375,000 and $700,000 to build the average bank branch. Banks also have electricity costs from computers, air conditioning, and lighting. One redditor estimated that U.S. banks use 2,167 GWh of electricity...

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Science fiction writers excel at predicting the future. Jules Verne imagined rocket ships long before rockets were blasting into space. William Gibson foresaw the rise of the internet in Neuromancer. Arthur C Clark wrote about satellites decades before one ever shuttled a call to a cell phone.

At its core, sci-fi writing is about imagination, about openness to new ideas and change. To do that, sci-fi authors must transcend internal biases and limitations. If you can only see what's right in front of you, you can't see what's coming. Sci-fi authors not only predict the future, they help create it. Their ideas act as catalysts that spur later innovation. As a young author I read the greats, and they inspired my own fiction. Old sci-fi inspires new.

One of the speculative authors who influenced me was Charles Stross. Accelerando and Glasshouse are two of the best sci-fi books of all time. His mind-bending worlds push the limits of what's possible in fiction....

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Why is the assumption that miners sell all their coins still so common?

I have never seen a good explanation of this. Professional miners are in a position identical to professional speculators, they just go about their buying differently, and their operational costs are slightly offset by Tx fees. Casual miners are likewise in the same position as casual speculators. Not profitable? Don't buy any more coin (turn off your rig).

"But miners have expenses to pay, they must sell every coin or they lose money!" Gee, thanks sherlock. I didn't hear that explanation the previous 100 times.

Except their expenses are essentially the same as an investor's: They convert non-bitcoin capital into bitcoin. So what if they pay their fiat to their electricity company (mining equipment seller, etc) instead of to an exchange? Why would this compel them to sell all of it, or half of it, or any of it? Without knowing what their current production costs are, or their lifetime cost...

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Bitcoin isn’t wasting electricity. Well, at least not as much as everyone says it is. What it is doing is much harder to figure. But let’s try.

The claim that Bitcoin was a huge waste of electricity were based on widely quoted statistics from Blockchain.info—now removed from the site but still wildly cited by commentators such as PandoDaily. These figures are simply wrong, and some simple math shows this, if anyone had bothered to check.

Bitcoin works by solving cryptographical math puzzles the hard way in order to secure its transaction record. A distributed computer network, comprised of every computer that is “mining” Bitcoin, processes individual “hashes” looking for the solution, and when the problem is solved, the network moves onto the next problem. There is no way to fake transactions, without having more computers than all of the network combined. The network reports how much computing power is working on the problem via the global hashrate, which is how fast...

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Bitcoin is a new phenomenon which attracts people from around the globe. It is getting more popular and famous among even folk who haven’t been really keen on high-tech. They start thinking about exactly how it works and how they can get it. These questions bring them to Mining. The only way to get precious coins almost for free. Does it make sense? Let’s look at it, step by step.

Where do Coins Come From?

Bitcoin, as a system, doesn’t need a Treasury, a Central Bank, or any kind of government. It needs only infrastructure which backs all transactions and coins. Every day, thousands and thousands of transactions are to be proved and accepted. This makes the system work. All of these purchases and auctions are being verified by people around the world: by miners. When someone switches on a computer, sets up software for bitcoin-mining and connects to the Internet, then the game starts. The personal computer verifies transactions, working like hundreds of...

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@Dan – I am reading your input on this thread and I guess I am a bit confused. You claim to be an SME in applied physics, but not in coding. Over the Financial Services industry, you think Bitcoin is a more efficient monetary transaction system by orders of magnitude due to the physics of it all. Am I basically on the right track? Then, you go on to say that you cannot possibly comprehend how Satoshi, or anyone in this group for that matter could have the vision, or better yet code around this element of physics? I guess I am trying to understand what exactly is “really pissing” you off. As a self proclaimed SME, this is an opportunity for you to objectively help us all in understanding this emerging technology without condescension. No?

You say, “My analysis says this is true” – do you have this in a peer-reviewed format that can be published for us all to see? This would be very helpful for the community at large. I for one would read it. You also say “…but how did...

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Before we start, if you’re new to Bitcoin mining and don’t know what it is watch this short and simple explanation:

“Is Bitcoin Mining Profitable in 2016?“

The short answer would be “It depends on how much you’re willing to spend”. Each person asking himself this will get a slightly different answer since Bitcoin Mining profitability depends on many different factors. In order to find out Bitcoin mining profitability for different factors “mining profitability calculators” were invented.

These calculators take into account the different parameters such as electricity cost, the cost of your hardware and other variables and give you an estimate of your projected profit. Before I give you a short example of how this is calculated let’s make sure you are familiar with the different variables:

Hash Rate – A Hash is the mathematical problem the miner’s computer needs to solve. The Hash Rate is the rate at which these problems are being solved. The more...

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It may be an alternative to fiat currencies and traditional banking, but Bitcoin is using up entirely too much electricity. One critic claims the online crypto-currency uses 5,000 times more power per transaction than VISA and is not sustainable.

According to the calculations by Christopher Malmo, writing at Vice’s blog Motherboard, “a single Bitcoin transaction uses roughly enough electricity to power 1.57 American households for a day.”

Citing estimates by the computer cooling firm Allied Control, Malmo says the total power consumption of the Bitcoin network is anywhere from 250 to 500 Megawatts (MW). Taking into account the total number of calculations the network can perform per second (hashrate) and the “generous miner efficiency” of 0.6 watts per gigahash, Malmo writes, the network’s constant power draw is just under 215 MW, or enough to power 173,000 average US households for a day.

So a single #bitcoin transaction...

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This list of countries by [electric energy consumption] is mostly based on The World Factbook.[1] For informational purposes several non-sovereign entities are also included in this list with their parent state noted. In addition, the per capita data for many countries may be slightly inaccurate as population data may not be for the same year that the consumption data are. Population data were obtained from the List of countries by population in 2005, except for years other than 2005, in which case they were obtained from the Wikipedia pages for the corresponding countries/territories. Average power per capita was calculated according to the formula:[2]

Electric power per capita [ in watt-hour ] = Total population electricity consumption [ in MW·h/yr ] * 1,000,000/(365.25 x 24)/population. Electric power per capita [ in watt-hour ] = Total population electricity consumption [ in MW·h/yr ] * 114.077116 /population. 1 MW·h/yr = 1,000,000 Wh/(365.25 x 24)h = 114.077116 Watt

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