Crypto-currencies are an eco nightmare... Something that Bitcoin does entirely too well is consuming energy. By design. it requires a hefty amount of computational processing to “mine” and validate a block for the chain. A Bitcoin mining operation is typically an industrial operation. If you’ve ever noticed how hot your computer gets, that’s largely due to the single central processor unit (CPU) inside it -- often a 2” x 2” chip that forms the core of your computer. A typical Bitcoin mining operation will have thousands of these CPU’s all blazing away at once: China is a major mining center with huge operations powered by nearby hydroelectric dams to get the best electricity rates. In fact, it’s been calculated that a single bitcoin transaction now uses up as much electricity as a home might use in a month. Further, the complex math puzzles solved by Bitcoin miners are designed to become more complicated as more computers join the cryptocurrency’s network. Which means even more power will be consumed in the future as/if Bitcoin grows even larger. One estimate calculates that at its current trajectory Bitcoin is on track to consume 100% of the world’s electricity production by 2020. Clearly that won’t happen; but it illustrates a potent limitation on just how big Bitcoin could possibly get.So the very feature of Bitcoin that makes it attractive also makes it unattractive. It seems silly to devise a currency alternative that requires the use of a lot of energy. Shouldn’t a currency require almost no energy to persist once it has been placed in circulation? (like, say, a physical silver coin)The other problem here is that if such vast amounts of electricity and computing power are required to run Bitcoin when it’s processing relatively few transactions, it cannot possibly be a viable candidate as a global currency (as some have suggested) where billions of individual transactions are conducted each day, with tens of trillions of dollars of notional value being transmitted.Bitcoin only conducts around 400,000 transactions each day worth roughly $3.5 billion. For Bitcoin to become the world currency, it would require more energy than exists on the planet today. And the world would fry itself in the resultant waste heat trying to get there. So that clearly won’t happen. Read full article.