Bitcoin mining can help reduce up to 8% of global emissions: Study

Bitcoin mining can help reduce up to 8% of global emissions: Study

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A paper published by the Institute of Risk Management (IRM) concluded that Bitcoin (BTC) has the potential to be a catalyst for a global energy transition. 

IRM Energy and Renewables Group members Dylan Campbell and Alexander Larsen published a report called “Bitcoin and the Energy Transition: From Risk to Opportunity.” The paper argued that while BTC was perceived as a risk because of its energy consumption, it can also become a catalyst for energy transition and could lead to new solutions for energy challenges across the globe.

Within the report, the authors also highlighted the important function of energy and the increasing need for reliable, clean and more affordable sources of energy. Despite the criticisms of Bitcoin’s energy intensity, the study provided a more balanced view of Bitcoin by also showing the potential benefits that BTC can bring to the energy industry.

Amount of vented methane that can be used in Bitcoin mining. Source: IRM

According to the report, Bitcoin mining can reduce global emissions by up to 8% by 2030. This can be done by converting the world’s wasted methane emissions into less harmful emissions. The report cited a theoretical case saying that using captured methane to power Bitcoin mining operations can reduce the amount of methane vented into the atmosphere. 

Related: Bitcoin energy pivot achieves what ‘few industries can claim’ — Bloomberg analyst

The paper also presented various other opportunities that allow Bitcoin to contribute to the energy sector. According to the report, Bitcoin can also contribute to energy efficiency through electricity grid management by using Bitcoin miners and transferring heat from miners to greenhouses.

“We have shown that while Bitcoin is a consumer of electricity, this does not translate to it being a high emitter of carbon dioxide and other atmospheric pollutants. Bitcoin can be the catalyst to a cleaner, more energy-abundant future for all,” the authors wrote.

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