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#4603567 - 12/14/17 02:32 PM Bitcoin an energy disaster
Shannow Offline


Registered: 12/12/02
Posts: 40126
Loc: 'Stralia
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-12-12/bi...tricity/9246888

It's been assessed that the mining of the limit of 1,800 bitcoins per month is using electricity equivalent to the energy consumption of New Zealand.

Yes, that's tiny...but meaningless calculations to "do the work" required to gain a bitcoin mean that currently the energy consumption is that of a modern country.


Read one economist who said that it's not a runaway catastrophe, the price of energy will stabilise the bitcoin price.

For reference, 150MWh on a 40% efficient plant is about 145,000 lb of coal.

In a way the bitcoin "mining" is akin to having the hole digging gangs digging holes and filling them back up...effort for the sake of doing it.

Years ago I used to donate spare processing capacity to SETI and Cancer research...at least using that sort of process for bitcoin payment makes some sense.

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#4603576 - 12/14/17 02:42 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: Shannow]
LoneRanger Offline


Registered: 07/02/07
Posts: 4095
Loc: Midwest USA
Yep. When bitcoin was low triple digits, mining wasn't as big of a deal. North of $10,000/per, well, I can see people and consortiums both pvt and govt getting into serious mining.
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#4603590 - 12/14/17 03:03 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: Shannow]
cpayne5 Offline


Registered: 12/28/05
Posts: 614
Loc: Virginia

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#4603642 - 12/14/17 04:34 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: Shannow]
E150GT Offline


Registered: 03/11/12
Posts: 1145
Loc: San Antonio, TX
My brother has a finished out shed he calls “the lodge” complete with Sheetrock and insulation. He was mining bitcoin via about 6 machines and could not keep that shed cool. He had fans and two window units. It got so hot one cord burned and could have caused a fire. I don’t even want to imagine how much his utility bill was. That’s probably the reason he doesn’t do it anymore. That and the machines needed are more powerful than the ones he has now.
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#4603647 - 12/14/17 04:41 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: cpayne5]
Shannow Offline


Registered: 12/12/02
Posts: 40126
Loc: 'Stralia
Originally Posted By: cpayne5


talking head justifying the huge energy wastage...

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#4603649 - 12/14/17 04:43 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: Shannow]
bdcardinal Offline


Registered: 06/03/05
Posts: 11067
Loc: Santa Barbara, CA
One of my friends has multiple server racks in his house, none are for mining, but his power bill is astronomical. The people that tend to do the mining setups do it in a way where the power companies will report them to the police to investigate. Their sudden increase has the same pattern as a grow house.
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#4603675 - 12/14/17 05:03 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: Shannow]
eyeofthetiger Offline


Registered: 11/18/17
Posts: 683
Loc: South Carolina
Bitcoin mining is not cost effective on the U.S. power grid. I think most of the big mining operations went to China for the cheap electricity.
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#4603677 - 12/14/17 05:04 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: eyeofthetiger]
OVERKILL Online   content


Registered: 04/28/08
Posts: 36599
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Originally Posted By: eyeofthetiger
Bitcoin mining is not cost effective on the U.S. power grid. I think most of the big mining operations went to China for the cheap electricity.


And comically, where they burn the most coal. Go figure.

Wouldn't be economical in Ontario either. Would be in Quebec though, they pay less than $0.05/kWh.
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#4603684 - 12/14/17 05:09 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: bdcardinal]
Virtus_Probi Online   content


Registered: 06/25/15
Posts: 4041
Loc: New England
Originally Posted By: bdcardinal
One of my friends has multiple server racks in his house, none are for mining, but his power bill is astronomical. The people that tend to do the mining setups do it in a way where the power companies will report them to the police to investigate. Their sudden increase has the same pattern as a grow house.


Jeez, maybe the Trailer Park Boys are into bitcoin mining now??
;^)
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#4603691 - 12/14/17 05:16 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: Virtus_Probi]
5AcresAndAFool Offline


Registered: 12/18/16
Posts: 433
Loc: Indiana
Originally Posted By: Virtus_Probi
Originally Posted By: bdcardinal
One of my friends has multiple server racks in his house, none are for mining, but his power bill is astronomical. The people that tend to do the mining setups do it in a way where the power companies will report them to the police to investigate. Their sudden increase has the same pattern as a grow house.


Jeez, maybe the Trailer Park Boys are into bitcoin mining now??
;^)



This show is one of my guilty pleasures.

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#4603693 - 12/14/17 05:16 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: Shannow]
PandaBear Offline


Registered: 08/05/02
Posts: 14252
Loc: Silicon Valley
The same as physical gold mining throughout human history. Didn't add any value to the overall economy but people did it and wasted a lot of human resources.

I have my own believe on why bitcoin price is where it is now, and it has nothing to do with mining energy cost. I think it has more to do with institutional investors buying them and consolidating the ownership to manipulate the prices, like how diamond, oil, aluminum prices are manipulated.

I know there were places where Taxi medallions were bought up by one family, keeping it high, and used as a collateral for loans for more medallion purchases to keep the prices high.


Edited by PandaBear (12/14/17 05:17 PM)
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#4603698 - 12/14/17 05:23 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: PandaBear]
Shannow Offline


Registered: 12/12/02
Posts: 40126
Loc: 'Stralia
Originally Posted By: PandaBear
I have my own believe on why bitcoin price is where it is now, and it has nothing to do with mining energy cost. I think it has more to do with institutional investors buying them and consolidating the ownership to manipulate the prices, like how diamond, oil, aluminum prices are manipulated.


Yes, but the price, and the limit 1,800 that can be mined per month justify inordinate energy useage to be the one that gets the coins.

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#4603706 - 12/14/17 05:31 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: Shannow]
cpayne5 Offline


Registered: 12/28/05
Posts: 614
Loc: Virginia
Originally Posted By: Shannow
Originally Posted By: cpayne5


talking head justifying the huge energy wastage...


I'm more interested in your argument/refutation of the position rather than the person giving it. If you're willing.

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#4603730 - 12/14/17 05:54 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: cpayne5]
Shannow Offline


Registered: 12/12/02
Posts: 40126
Loc: 'Stralia
Originally Posted By: cpayne5

I'm more interested in your argument/refutation of the position rather than the person giving it. If you're willing.


OK, he's saying that the energy use is the energy use, and that's all there is to it.
And that the users will move where the energy is cheap - cheap because it's oversupplied at that location.
And "look over there a bunny", the money sector uses energy too, they have armoured cars, while we have crypto security. The more that they move, the more armoured cars that they move, whereas you don't have to scale their crypto security.
And if you build a fictitious green power station for the future, and use the energy to mine bitcoin today, you pay it off sooner rather than later, making it a green coin...soaking up renewables, increasing their local prices (his supply/demand statement, just means more ungreen is burned somewhere else.

Yes, the money sector uses energy, but is used by most of us versus bitcoin.

So what's your analysis of the article that I linked rather than just throwing a youtube link ?

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#4603779 - 12/14/17 06:43 PM Re: Bitcoin an energy disaster [Re: Shannow]
cpayne5 Offline


Registered: 12/28/05
Posts: 614
Loc: Virginia
Originally Posted By: Shannow
Originally Posted By: cpayne5

I'm more interested in your argument/refutation of the position rather than the person giving it. If you're willing.


OK, he's saying that the energy use is the energy use, and that's all there is to it.
And that the users will move where the energy is cheap - cheap because it's oversupplied at that location.
And "look over there a bunny", the money sector uses energy too, they have armoured cars, while we have crypto security. The more that they move, the more armoured cars that they move, whereas you don't have to scale their crypto security.
And if you build a fictitious green power station for the future, and use the energy to mine bitcoin today, you pay it off sooner rather than later, making it a green coin...soaking up renewables, increasing their local prices (his supply/demand statement, just means more ungreen is burned somewhere else.

Yes, the money sector uses energy, but is used by most of us versus bitcoin.

So what's your analysis of the article that I linked rather than just throwing a youtube link ?



The bolded parts show a misunderstanding of the fundamental belief system of bitcoin purists. Essentially, they believe that bitcoin is a superior currency to anything in existence and that it provides a net benefit by its very existence (decentralization, security, anonymity, zero inflation, transactional integrity, etc). Not saying I believe that, but just giving you that as a reference.

I'm not well versed enough on the pros/cons of bitcoin to really have my opinion mean much of anything at this point. I find it interesting and try to listen to believers and naysayers when they have something valid to say. There's a ton of discussion on cryptocurrencies these days, and I simply provided the Youtube link as an opinion I had come across that speaks to the thesis of your article. Not trying to persuade anyone, as I've not been swayed either way myself.



Edited by cpayne5 (12/14/17 06:57 PM)

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