Mark Gimein is something of a Bitcoin skeptic, but in addition to his concerns about Bitcoin not being a "real currency," he's now charging that it has created a "a real-world environmental disaster."
Writing in Bloomberg News, Gimein notes that mining Bitcoins—performing computationally expensive calculations needed to define new Bitcoins—uses power. A lot of power. (Read our 2011 Bitcoin primer for more details.) He writes:
"About 982 megawatt hours a day, to be exact. That’s enough to power roughly 31,000 US homes, or about half a Large Hadron Collider. If the dreams of Bitcoin proponents are realized, and the currency is adopted for widespread commerce, the power demands of bitcoin mines would rise dramatically.
If that makes you think of the vast efforts devoted to the mining of precious metals in the centuries of gold- and silver-based economies, it should. One of the strangest aspects of the Bitcoin frenzy is that the Bitcoin economy replicates some of the most archaic features of the gold standard. Real-world mining of precious metals for currency was a resource-hungry and value-destroying process. Bitcoin mining is too."
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Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc, Gottcash.com Penny Auction