Bitcoin mining, or rather proof of work mining, has been under the scanner of climate activists for a long time. In the recently concluded United Nations Climate change Conference (COP 26), emerging technology and its ramifications on carbon offset goals were a major subject.
When it comes to Bitcoin mining, opinions on its effect on climate change are very contentious. While some believe Bitcoin mining is one of the many contributors to climate change and carbon emissions, others see it as the biggest threat in an exponentially growing cryptocurrency world.
How crypto firms deal with climate change responsibilities and accusations will determine the future of the sector to a great extent. For instance, many firms are considering buying carbon credits as a means of compensating for their role in climate change. However, there is no long-lasting solution yet.
One of the major focus areas of COP 26 was the transition to clean energy sources. In light of Bitcoin mining, this is one trend that has the potential to make Bitcoin farming sustainable. For example, El Salvador is planning to run a Bitcoin city from power derived from a nearby active volcano. On the other side, the Texas Blockchain Summit earlier this year saw many clean energy source suggestions, including residual natural gas from oil fields. From all the drama and debates, it is clear that thermal power plants can not sustain Bitcoin mining for much longer. Among all possible options, nuclear power seems to be the most viable yet involves the most regulatory complications.