Ahead of Ethereum’s transition to proof-of-stake (PoS), Bitcoin (BTC) maximalist Michael Saylor has come out swinging against what he says is “misinformation and propaganda” about the environmental impacts of proof-of-work (PoW) BTC mining.
The MicroStrategy executive chairman, who recently stepped down as CEO, shared a lengthy post on his Twitter account on Wednesday, detailing seven of his “high level thoughts” on BTC mining and its impact on the environment.
— Michael Saylor⚡️ (@saylor) September 14, 2022
One of his key arguments was against the notion that PoW BTC mining isn’t energy efficient.
Instead, Saylor claims it is the “cleanest industrial use of electricity and is improving its energy efficiency at the fastest rate across any major industry.”
He backed up his argument with figures taken from the Q2 Global Bitcoin Data Mining Review published in July by the Bitcoin Mining Council, a group of 45 companies that claim to represent 50.5% of the global network, noting:
“Our metrics show ~59.5% of energy for bitcoin mining comes from sustainable sources and energy efficiency improved 46% YoY.”
Saylor’s argument comes as the BTC mining industry has received a lot of pressure over its alleged impact on the environment, which has even led to certain United States states taking steps to ban crypto mining.
Saylor claims that constant improvements to the network and “relentless improvement in the semiconductors,” makes mining far more energy efficient than large tech companies such as Google, Netflix or Facebook.
“Approximately $4-5 billion in electricity is used to power & secure a network that is worth $420 billion as of today,” argued Saylor:
“This makes Bitcoin far less energy intensive than Google, Netflix, or Facebook, and 1-2 orders of magnitude less energy intensive than traditional 20th century industries like airlines, logistics, retail, hospitality, and agriculture.”
Saylor also claimed that 99.92% of carbon emissions in the world are due to industrial uses of energy other than bitcoin mining.
Looking at the numbers, Saylor does not believe environmentalist arguments condemning PoW mining are fair.
Rather, in his opinion, it’s an attempt to “focus negative attention on Proof-of-Work mining” and distract authorities from the “inconvenient truth that Proof-of-Stake crypto assets are generally unregistered securities trading on unregulated exchanges.”
In one of the more high-profile legal cases at the moment, Ripple is embroiled in a lawsuit with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for allegedly conducting an unregistered securities sale in the form of Ripple’s XRP.
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In closing, Saylor says all the negativity toward PoW mining distracts from the possible benefits for the world.
“Bitcoin mining can bring a clean, profitable and modern industry that generates hard currency to remote locations in the developing world, connected only via satellite link.”