- Cryptocurrency miners around the world used as much electricity as all of Australia in 2023, according to an EIA study.
- In the United States alone, crypto mining accounts for 0.6% to 2.3% of the country’s electricity needs, which is on par with states like Utah and West Virginia.
- The EIA is currently requiring some crypto miners in the US to report details of their energy usage.
In 2023, crypto miners around the world used as much electricity as all of Australia.
That’s according to a new report from the Energy Information Administration. In an analysis posted last week, the EIA said global electricity usage for crypto mining accounts for 0.2% to 0.9% of global electricity demand.
In the United States alone, cryptocurrency mining accounts for 0.6% to 2.3% of the country’s electricity demand. This is about the same as Utah and West Virginia.
“Mining” a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin is essentially adding new tokens to the blockchain by solving complex cryptographic puzzles. These problems are solved with larger and more powerful computers. This explains why computers consume a lot of power.
It has long been known that the cryptocurrency industry uses large amounts of electricity. Last September, a New York Times analysis found that mining Bitcoin consumes seven times the energy that Google uses in a year, or about 91 terawatt-hours. And I’ve received a lot of criticism for it.
“As crypto mining increases in the United States, there are growing concerns about the energy-intensive nature of this business and its impact on the U.S. power industry,” the EIA report states. “Concerns expressed in the EIA include the strain on the electricity grid during peak demand periods, the potential for higher electricity prices, and the impact on energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2).2) emissions. ”
The cryptocurrency mining industry also appears to be growing rapidly in the United States. According to calculations by the Cambridge Bitcoin Power Consumption Index, the share of Bitcoin mining conducted in the country rose from 3.4% in January 2020 to 37.8% in January 2022. . There are a total of approximately 137 mining facilities in his 21 states in the United States. The EIA study found that most of these are concentrated in Texas, Georgia, and New York.
The US government appears to want to take a closer look at the industry’s energy use. An emergency request from the EIA to collect data from commercial cryptocurrency miners was approved last week. The survey will require “identified” facilities to report details of their energy usage.