If you’ve been following the cryptocurrency space for a while, chances are you’ve heard this one: “Bitcoin uses more energy than <insert country here>.” The story will hit the top of Google News every few months or so, helping the perma-bears pat themselves on the back while striking fear in the hearts of the true believers. But what if I were to tell you that it’s not that big of a deal?
With Fukishima’s nuclear reactors set to restart for the first time since 2011’s meltdown, you could be forgiven if you missed another bit of recent energy-related news from the east-central prefecture: an exciting blockchain-powered pilot has just been given the green light. If successful, it could change the way Fukishima – and perhaps indeed the whole country – consumes, generates and trades electricity.
The Bitcoin network is by far the biggest computer in the world. It is more powerful than the top 500 supercomputers in the world combined. Digiconomist has some interesting statistics on the amount of energy consumed by Bitcoin. At the time of writing, the Bitcoin network uses 1/2000th of all the electricity used in the world!