Before you join the moral panic about bitcoin destroying our environment, remember that cash could be a whole lot worse

Perhaps fuelled by deep frustration at not having jumped on the cryptocurrency bandwagon a few years ago, I’ve come to realise that people love hating bitcoin.

Social media posters are delighted by stories about the prospect of a regulatory bitcoin ban and when its value tumbled from lofty heights a few weeks ago, Twitter was abuzz with memes and GIFs created by cynics thrilled by the slide. 

Lately, a new idea has kept those scoffers entertained. Headlines this week announced that Iceland will apparently use more electricity mining bitcoin this year than it will for powering its homes.  As well as financing the world’s criminal networks, exacerbating global wealth inequality and facilitating the emergence of a destructive robot revolution, bitcoin – it seems – is now also melting our ice caps and killing polar bears. The end probably really is nigh.

But not so fast. Despite being the first person to make a snide remark about bitcoin, theories of environmental…


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