Bitcoin is Killing the Environment

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Now, this is something you probably wouldn’t have expected to hear.

But the exploding price of Bitcoin in recent months has triggered doubts not only about the financial stability of the rally but also about the environmental sustainability of the digital currency itself.

Alarmists are concerned that the Bitcoin computer operation systems could easily consume all of the world’s energy by 2020.

To put that into perspective, the digital currency’s operations use as much energy as the entire country of Denmark, or enough to power 3,071,823 U.S. households.

Thanks to Bitcoin, it could be lights out for all of us in just three short years.

Other analysts claim that the “true” figure is much smaller than the one I stated above, but it’s a difficult calculation to measure considering Bitcoin’s global presence is generated by an unclear mixture of machines comingled with other sources of electricity demand.

However, it is fairly certain that the world’s favorite cryptocurrency uses as much as 1 to 4 gigawatts (billion watts) of electricity… which is roughly the output of three nuclear reactors.

That amounts to less than 1% of U.S. electricity alone and no more than 0.14% of global electricity generation.

That won’t really devour the world’s entire electricity resources, but it is a very significant drain on them, and it’s growing fast.

Moreover, some of the electricity being used to make Bitcoin transactions, especially in China, is coming from coal, which we all know is a huge contribution to detrimental climate change.

What’s more, with Bitcoin’s inherent volatility, all these calculations might be subject to change… and not exactly for the better.

The reason Bitcoin uses so much energy in the first place is rooted deep in the way the digital currency operates.

Not controlled by a central bank or any other commercial regulatory body, Bitcoin relies on a network of users who expend large amounts of computing power, and thus energy, building the blockchain of payment transactions.

As it becomes more valuable, the demand for high-powered computer processing grows in kind. Which, again, means more energy use.

Another reason Bitcoin uses so much energy is because it is the most popular investment in the world, according to a Bank of America Merrill Lynch survey.

Bitcoin topped the list of the most crowded trades, a measure of sentiment that such a popular investment could quickly reverse its gains.

Such high traffic on popular Bitcoin sites has caused severe slowdowns to the point where customers are unable to purchase the currency at more desirable prices. At some points, the sites just completely shut down altogether.

In order to get them back online, again, it takes a great deal of computing power.

If Bitcoin’s price and concurrent energy consumption continues to rise at the clip seen this year, it will prove to be a very serious problem.

But, like all things pertaining to Bitcoin, it’s less clear whether the current rate of growth in energy consumption will continue.

At this point, however, Bitcoin is killing the environment. And if you’re one of the lemmings jumping off the Bitcoin cliff, then, in essence, you’re contributing to Bitcoin sucking all the energy out of our world, too.

Don’t be a Bitcoin lemming.

Like I’ve said many times before, my ultimate goal is to make my subscribers a ton of money.

And I would never advise my subscribers to invest in something so crackbrained.

We’ve had an incredibly successful year so far. As 2017 draws to a close, let’s kick off the New Year with a bang as well.

There’s no doubt cryptocurrencies are the hottest investments of the future. Despite my vehemence towards Bitcoin, I am by no means against all digital currencies.

There are literally hundreds of smaller “altcoins” out there full of promise and poised to become huge successes in 2018.

My colleague Alex Koyfman has spent weeks isolating the best candidates to succeed Bitcoin. And of the over 800 digital currencies out there today, he has found exactly two.

These altcoins lack the built-in dangers that accompany Bitcoin and would make for perfectly sound and profitable investments.

They’re trading at less than 1/1,000th of Bitcoin’s market capitalization, but that could all change overnight.

In fact, recent growth has already indicated an imminent jump.

Click here to access Alex’s full report, complete with instructions on how to buy these two revolutionary cryptocurrencies.

Until next time,

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Briton Ryle

follow basic@BritonRyle on Twitter

An 18-year veteran of the newsletter business, Briton Ryle is the editor of The Wealth Advisory income stock newsletter, with a focus on top-quality dividend growth stocks and REITs. Briton also manages the Real Income Trader advisory service, where his readers take regular cash payouts using a low-risk covered call option strategy. He also contributes a weekly column to the Wealth Daily e-letter. To learn more about Briton, click here.

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