One bitcoin transaction now uses as much energy as your house in a week -- Motherboard, November 1, 2017. Bitbcoin's surge in price has sent its electricity consumption soaring.That's a legitimate story; a legitimate concern. Look at this, over at the Associated Press:
Bitcoin mining guzzles energy -- and its carbon footprint just keeps growing -- Wired, December 6, 2017. Bitcoin is slowing the effort to achieve a rapid transition away from fossil fuels. What’s more, this is just the beginning. Given its rapidly growing climate footprint, bitcoin is a malignant development, and it’s getting worse.
New gold rush: Energy demands soar in Iceland for bitcoins.
Iceland is expected to use more energy "mining" bitcoins and other virtual currencies this year than it uses to power its homes.
With massive amounts of electricity needed to run the computers that create bitcoins, large virtual currency companies have established a base in the North Atlantic island nation blessed with an abundance of renewable energy.
The energy demand has developed because of the soaring cost of producing and collecting virtual currencies. Computers are used to make the complex calculations that verify a running ledger of all the transactions in virtual currencies around the world.
In return, the miners claim a fraction of a coin not yet in circulation. In the case of bitcoin, a total of 21 million can be mined, leaving about 4.2 million left to create. As more bitcoin enter circulation, more powerful computers are needed to keep up with the calculations — and that means more energy.
The serene coastal town of Keflavik on Iceland's desolate southern peninsula has over the past months boomed as an international hub for mining bitcoins and other virtual currencies.